Click out as Astros GM 6 days after winning World Series

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
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HOUSTON – Astros general manager James Click will not be given a new contract, a highly unusual move that the team announced Friday – just six days after Houston won the World Series.

Click was hired from the Tampa Bay Rays before the 2020 season and appeared increasingly distant from owner Jim Crane. The 44-year-old Click did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Click said Tuesday at the general managers meetings in Las Vegas that his contract expired Oct. 31 and the situation had not been addressed. He also said that he was given little advance notice of Wednesday’s news conference, where the Astros announced that manager Dusty Baker was coming back on a one-year contract.

Crane was asked about Click’s status multiple times Wednesday and said the two were in discussions. Crane also was asked how he would evaluate the job Click had done since taking over after Jeff Luhnow was fired in the wake of the team’s sign-stealing scandal.

“We’re going over that,” Crane said. “But I think James has done a good job. He stepped in and made some good moves. We’ll sit down and see where we’re going to end up with James.”

After that, Crane was asked if he thought the organization was better off now with Click at the helm: “I’ve run a lot of businesses. This one is no different. I’m never satisfied. If I was satisfied maybe we wouldn’t be where we are. But I press everybody to get better from top to bottom … so I’m always looking to improve and I can improve, the people on my team can improve and the players can improve. So the standard is there for everyone.”

Click spent 14 years with the Rays, starting as a coordinator of baseball operations before becoming the team’s director of baseball research and development and director of baseball operations. He spent three seasons as vice president of baseball operations before Houston hired him.

Free agent slugger José Abreu signs 3-year, $58.5M deal with Astros

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
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HOUSTON — Jose Abreu and the World Series champion Astros agreed to a three-year, $58.5 million contract, adding another powerful bat to Houston’s lineup.

Abreu, the 2020 AL MVP, gets $19.5 million in each of the next three seasons.

He spent his first nine major league seasons with the Chicago White Sox. The first baseman became a free agent after batting .304 with 15 home runs, 75 RBIs and an .824 OPS this year.

With the Astros, he replaces Yuli Gurriel at first base in a batting order that also features All-Star sluggers Yordan Alvarez, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker.

Gurriel became a free agent after Houston defeated the Philadelphia Phillies this month for its second World Series championship.

The 35-year-old Abreu becomes the biggest free agent to switch teams so far this offseason. Born in Cuba, the three-time All-Star and 2014 AL Rookie of the Year is a .292 career hitter in the majors with 243 homers, 863 RBIs and an .860 OPS.

The Astros announced the signing. Abreu was scheduled to be introduced in a news conference at Minute Maid Park.

He would get a $200,000 for winning an MVP award, $175,000 for finishing second in the voting, $150,000 for third, $125,000 for fourth and $100,000 for fifth. Abreu also would get $100,000 for earning World Series MVP and $75,000 for League Championship Series MVP, $75,000 for making the All-Star team and $75,000 for winning a Gold Glove or a Silver Slugger.

Abreu gets a hotel suite on road trips and the right to buy a luxury suite for all Astros home games.