The Indians signed outfielder Austin Kearns to a one-year, Major League contract, according to the team's Twitter feed. The deal is worth $1.3MM plus incentives, reports MLB.com's Jordan Bastian, who also notes that the Indians will have to remove someone from their 40-man roster for Kearns. Kearns spent the 2010 season with the Tribe before being traded to the Yankees on July 30th for Zach McAllister.
Kearns, 30, hit .263/.351/.395 in 461 plate appearances this year, playing mainly left field. I imagine the Indians' ideal outfield setup involves Shin-Soo Choo, Grady Sizemore, and Michael Brantley as starters and Kearns as the primary backup. Kearns is represented by SFX.
The Kearns deal marks Chris Antonetti's first Major League signing as Cleveland's GM. Antonetti agreed to a minor league deal with Travis Buck earlier today. Bastian notes that the Indians remain in the market for a veteran starting pitcher and perhaps a third baseman.