Kevin C. Cox
The former Braves (and Red Sox) backstop heads to Boston for the next two seasons
Boston was out looking for a catcher, and apparently, for more reasons than in order to lure Hiroki Kuroda to the Red Sox with the power of familiarity. Former Red Sox backstop David Ross, who has spent the last four seasons with the Braves since departing, has signed a two-year deal with Boston according to Ken Rosenthal.
Ross has been an excellent bat behind the plate over the last few years, hitting a combined .269/.353/.463 with the Atlanta Braves. That's impressive on its own, but don't let it be forgotten that Turner Field actually depresses power for right-handed hitters: there's a very good chance Ross hits even better by switching his digs to Fenway, where right-handers with pop are welcomed with open arms, and the occasional ball aimed at the Mass Pike. It also helps that Ross has never had any real platoon splits, either, and has shown very similar power against both lefties and righties.
He's also a solid defensive catcher, who has thrown out 28 percent of would-be basestealers in his career, and didn't dip below that percentage while with Atlanta. Ross has a reputation as being a strong backstop overall while in his gear, so Boston will be happy with him whether he's behind or at the plate.
His presence does likely mean that Ryan Lavarnway is slated for another year at Triple-A Pawtucket, though. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, the current starting catcher (and another former Brave) has one year of arbitration left before he's a free agent, so either Boston is planning to move him to give Ross the bulk of playing time, or the two will split time, with Ross around in 2014 if Salty leaves or Lavarnway remains ill-suited for major-league play.