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.

Dodgers designate Sergio Romo for assignment

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The Dodgers announced on Thursday that the club activated pitcher Grant Dayton from the 10-day disabled list and designated pitcher Sergio Romo for assignment.

Dayton, 29, went on the disabled list earlier this month with neck stiffness. He’ll resume with a 3.63 ERA and a 20/12 K/BB ratio in 22 1/3 innings.

Romo, 34, signed a one-year, $3 million deal with the Dodgers in February. It didn’t really work out, as the right-hander posted a 6.12 ERA with a 31/12 K/BB ratio in 25 innings. His peripherals are still decent, so it wouldn’t be surprising if a team in need of a bullpen arm makes a deal with the Dodgers within the week.

Nate Karns underwent season-ending surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome

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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that Royals pitcher Nate Karns underwent surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome on Wednesday. He’s expected to be ready for spring training next year. Karns went on the disabled list in May with an elbow injury and didn’t make much progress.

The Royals acquired Karns from the Mariners in January in exchange for outfielder Jarrod Dyson. Over eight starts and one relief appearance, the 29-year-old right-hander compiled a 4.17 ERA and a 51/13 K/BB ratio in 45 1/3 innings.

Karns will enter his first of three years of arbitration eligibility after the season, so he’ll be under the Royals’ control through 2020.