The Detroit Tigers signed catcher Gerald Laird year contract Friday.

After playing for the Tigers in 2009 and 2010, Laird spent last season with the World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals, batting .232 with one home run and 12 RBI in 37 games.

In 2009, Laird appeared in a career-high 135 games for the Tigers, hitting .225 with four home runs and 33 RBI.

In nine MLB seasons with the Cardinals, Tigers and Rangers, the 32-year-old backstop has hit .241 with 35 homers and 204 RBI.

Laird will back up starting catcher Alex Avila.