By Stephanie Storm
Beacon Journal sports writer
The Indians signed versatile free-agent infielder David Adams, a former New York Yankees prospect, to a major-league contract Friday. They also signed free-agent right-handed pitchers Travis Banwart and Tyler Cloyd and outfielder Matt Carson to minor-league deals with non-roster invitations to spring training.
Adams, 26, split last season between Triple-A Scranton and the Yankees, earning his first call-up after six minor-league seasons.
He became a free agent Dec. 2 after being non-tendered by the Yankees, who originally selected him from the University of Virginia in the third round of the 2008 draft. Adams has a career minor-league batting average of .291 with 120 doubles, 15 triples, 28 home runs and 222 RBI in 412 games. He has only struck out 290 times in 1,798 career plate appearances.
At Scranton, Adams hit .268 with 11 doubles, two triples, five home runs and 21 RBI in 59 games, appearing in 30 games at third base, 28 at second base and two at first base. During his time with the Yankees, he played 31 games at third base, nine at second base and four at first base.
Banwart, 27, has spent his professional career with the Oakland Athletics after being selected in the fourth round in 2007 out of Wichita State. He has spent the past four seasons at Triple-A Sacramento, last year going 10-5 with a 4.60 ERA in 29 games (23 starts).
Carson, 32, will start his second season within the Indians organization after spending a majority of last year at Triple-A Columbus. In 2013, he hit .252 with 16 doubles, 14 home runs, 49 RBI, 57 runs scored and had 14 stolen bases in 121 games with the Clippers. He hit .636 (7-for-11) in 20 games with the Indians with a home run and three RBI, including a game-winning, 11th-inning single Sept. 19 against the Houston Astros.
Cloyd, 26, was recently non-tendered by the Indians after being claimed off waivers from the Philadelphia Phillies on Oct. 2. He split last season between Triple-A Lehigh Valley and the Phillies, going 5-9 with a 4.71 ERA in 19 Triple-A starts.
He was the 2012 International League Pitcher of the Year and split that season between Double-A Reading and Lehigh Valley, combining to go 15-1 with a 2.26 ERA in 26 starts as well as making his major-league debut in six games with the Phillies.
Stephanie Storm can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Read the Indians blog at http://www.ohio.com/indians. Follow her on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/SStormABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.