(MCT) — Moving to upgrade their right-handed-hitting outfield options, the Cubs apparently have agreed to a two-year contract with free agent Scott Hairston.
The signing, pending a physical, was reported by Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal on Wednesday night and not immediately confirmed by team officials.
Hairston, 32, spent the last two years with the Mets, hitting .263 with a career-high 20 home runs last season. The downside to his game was a .299 on-base percentage, which dropped his career OBP to .302 in 777 games.
Hairston adds a left-field option that could make it easier to trade Alfonso Soriano. He played all three outfield spots last year and could wind up platooning with left-handed hitter Nate Schierholtz in right field if Soriano isn't traded and Brett Jackson doesn't make the team. That would move David DeJesus to a corner spot.
Dave Sappelt and non-roster outfielders Darnell McDonald and Brent Lillibridge currently provide right-handed depth.
Hairston's signing could be a sign the Cubs have a trade in the works. The 40-man roster currently is full and pitcher Carlos Villanueva, who agreed to a deal before Christmas, has yet to be placed on it. A second spot now will have to be cleared if Hairston actually signs.