Braves agree to sign A.J. Pierzynski

The Braves will replace Gerald Laird with A.J. Pierzynski.

Veteran catcher A.J. Pierzynski will join the Braves for the 2015 season as the backup to Christian Bethancourt.

Pierzynski will turn 38 next Tuesday. He's been in the big leagues for 17 seasons with the Giants, Twins, White Sox, Rangers and last year he split the 2014 season between the Red Sox and Cardinals.

Pierzynski hit .254 in 256 at bats for Boston with four home runs and 31 RBI. Then he hit .244 with St. Louis in 82 at bats in the final two months of the season.

Two years ago, Pierzynksi hit .272 with 17 home runs and 70 RBI with the Texas Rangers. He had 27 home runs in 2012 with the White Sox.

Pierzynski is considered a great clubhouse guy and should be a great mentor for Bethancourt. The signing also signals that Evan Gattis will play more in left field if he is still with the Braves once the 2015 season rolls around.

Pierzynski also brings an edge to the clubhouse. He is a fiery personality and could help the changing culture from the laid-back persona that has been in place for several years.

Pierzynski replaces Gerald Laird, who did well in his two seasons as Atlanta's backup catcher.

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