The Indians have signed outfielder David Lough to a minor-league deal, per a club announcement. He’ll report to Triple-A Columbus.
Lough, 31, joined the Tigers on a minors deal over the winter but failed to crack the Opening Day roster. He had struggled to a .169/.210/.203 batting line over 63 Triple-A plate appearances, leading to his release.
While he has never been an impactful hitter, the southpaw-swinging Lough has shown more in the past. In over two thousand trips to the plate at the highest level of the minors, he has slashed .287/.338/.427 with 34 home runs.
Seeing action over each of the past five MLB campaigns, Lough hasn’t quite produced enough with the bat to hold down a steady job. All told, he owns a .254/.300/.371 batting line with 13 long balls through 820 big league plate appearances. But he has typically graded out as a plus defender in the corners and has also seen fairly frequent action in center, making him a flexible option.
For the Indians, Lough represents a depth piece as the club continues to develop its outfield mix. Lonnie Chisenhall and Michael Brantley are both hitting well, but the rest of the group is in some flux. Top prospect Bradley Zimmer has shown talent through six games, but he’s also striking out at a prodigious (42.1%) rate. Daniel Robertson is currently up with three other outfielders — Abraham Almonte, Brandon Guyer, and Austin Jackson — shelved on the 10-day DL.