A.J. Pierzynski
Oct 15, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; St. Louis Cardinals catcher A.J. Pierzynski (12) reacts after being hit by the bat of San Francisco Giants first baseman Travis Ishikawa (45) during the second inning in game four of the 2014 NLCS playoff baseball game at AT&T Park. Reuters

A.J. Pierzynski has agreed to a one-year deal with the Atlanta Braves signing a contract of about $2 million. The deal will be finalised after a physical exam. The deal was first reported by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution with the article mentioning an unnamed source who broke the news for the signing of the free agent catcher. According to the same article, the deal may not be officially announced until after Jan. 1.

Pierzynski is a 17-year veteran with a career .281 hitting average with 177 home runs, 741 runs and 837 RBIs. The 37-year-old Pierzynski is well-traveled and has seen stints with the Minnesota Twins (1998–2003), San Francisco Giants (2004), Chicago White Sox (2005–2012), Texas Rangers (2013), Boston Red Sox (2014) and St. Louis Cardinals (2014). Pierzynski is a two-time MLB All-Star (2002 and 2006), one-time MLB World Series champion (2005) and one-time Silver Slugger awardee (2012).

The Red Sox released Pierzynski in July 2014 and he then signed with the Cardinals. He finished the regular season at with a 0.251 hitting average with 5 home runs and 37 RBIs. He was part of the Cardinals roster in the postseason playing in the National League Championship Series where he went 1-for-6 in 2 outings. Pierzynski will most likely serve as a back-up catcher to Christian Bethancourt but both will battle for the starting spot come training camp. Pierzynski will become Bethancourt’s understudy at the position as well.

Outside the field, the veteran Pierzynski has also indulged in a part-time broadcasting career serving as an analyst for Fox Sports in the MLB postseason for its pre-game and post-game shows from 2011 to 2013. The Atlanta Braves went 79-83 in the 2013-2014 MLB season missing the playoffs for the second straight year. They lost playoff series to the San Francisco Giants, 3-1 in the 2010 NLDS and to the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2012 NL Wild Card Game.