Jed Lowrie avoids arbitration with Astros for $2.4 million

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Jed Lowrie and the Astros have avoided arbitration, agreeing to a one-year, $2.4 million contract.

Acquired from the Red Sox last offseason, Lowrie was arbitration eligible for the second time after hitting .244 with 16 homers and a .769 OPS in 97 games as the Astros’ starting shortstop.

As usual he was productive when in the lineup but missed big chunks of time with injuries. Lowrie has one more season under team control before becoming a free agent, so it’ll be interesting to see if the Astros try to sign the oft-injured switch-hitter long term or shop him for younger talent before July 31.

Report: Momentum in talks between Mariners, Jon Jay

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MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports that there is some momentum in talks between the Mariners and free agent outfielder Jon Jay.

Jay, 32, hit .296/.374/.375 in 433 plate appearances with the Cubs last season, which is adequate. He’s heralded more for his defense and his ability to play all three outfield spots.

The Mariners are losing center fielder Jarrod Dyson to free agency and likely don’t want to rely on Guillermo Heredia next season, hence the interest in Jay. The free agent class for center fielders is otherwise relatively weak.