Astros beat writer Brian McTaggert is reporting today that Houston has signed shortstop Jed Lowrie to a three-year deal with a club option for a fourth. This news means that Lowrie will not play for the Mets in 2015, which in turn means we are getting closer and closer to seeing Wilmer Flores line up as the club's starting shortstop on Opening Day.
Since coming up with the Red Sox in 2010, Lowrie has always been a pretty good hitter for a shortstop... until last season. In 2013 -- his first year with Oakland after being traded by these same Astros for a prospect package -- Lowrie looked like a great asset by hitting .290/.344/.446 with home runs. Last year, however, his BABIP dropped from .345 to .300 and he hit .249/.321/.355 with just six home runs.
Confirmed: Lowrie gets $23 million over three years, and total could be $28 million with option.— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) December 15, 2014
In his free agent profile from earlier this offseason, Jeff Litt correctly predicted a three-year contract for Lowrie (although the price Houston paid is a little more palatable). He noted that this would be a significant expenditure for the Mets, who should like Lowrie's on-base skills but be wary of his already-declining defense. Since he'll turn 31 years old this April, Lowrie could very well be a second baseman for Houston by the time his contract is up.