Tigers sign catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia

Chris McCosky
The Detroit News

Nashville, Tenn. — The Tigers have signed veteran, switch-hitting catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia to a one-year deal at the major league minimum.

“We like his pop from the left side,” general manager Al Avila said. “We think that is going to play. We will see how that turns out in spring training.”

Saltalamacchia, 30, is still owed $8 million from the Marlins, which is why the Tigers could get him for the minimum. Splitting time with the Marlins and Diamondbacks last season, he hit .225 with nine home runs and 24 RBIs.

He has hit 98 home runs in nine big league seasons, 74 of them in the American League with the Rangers and Red Sox.

He is expected to battle right-handed hitting Bryan Holaday for the backup catcher job behind right-handed hitting James McCann.