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Astros sign free agent Lowrie to 3-year deal

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HOUSTON — The Houston Astros have agreed to terms on a three-year contract with free agent shortstop/infielder Jed Lowrie, General Manager Jeff Luhnow announced Monday. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The deal runs through 2017 and includes a club option for 2018. To create room on the 40-man roster, the Astros will announce a corresponding move on Tuesday.

This marks the return to Houston for Lowrie, who was the Astros everyday shortstop in 2012 before spending the last two seasons in Oakland (2013-14).

Lowrie, 30, has been one of the most productive shortstops in the Majors over the past three seasons (2012-14). He has tallied 35 home runs and 155 RBI in that span while posting a .747 OPS, which ranks 6th among all shortstops. Lowrie’s best season came in 2013 while with Oakland, hitting .290 in a career-high 154 games with 80 runs, 45 doubles, 15 home runs and 75 RBI. His 45 doubles were an Oakland franchise record for a switch-hitter and ranked second in the AL overall. Among AL shortstops in 2013, Lowrie was first in doubles, slugging (.472) and extra-base hits (54) and second in OPS (.819).

In 97 games as the Astros shortstop in 2012, Lowrie hit a career-high 16 home runs, which ranks second in franchise history for the position, while posting a .769 OPS overall. His .980 fielding pct. that season was tops among all NL shortstops (min. 90 games).

Lowrie began his pro career in the Red Sox organization after being selected as a supplemental pick following the first round of the 2005 First-Year Player Draft. In what was Luhnow’s first trade, Lowrie was acquired by the Astros on Dec. 14, 2011 as part of a deal that sent right-handed pitcher Mark Melancon to Boston. Lowrie was dealt to Oakland

on Feb. 4, 2013 along with right-handed pitcher Fernando Rodriquez in exchange for current Astros right-handed pitcher Brad Peacock, outfielder Chris Carter and catcher Max Stassi.

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