Houston, TX (Betting Express) - The Houston Astros
agreed to terms on one- year contracts with catcher J.R. Towles, pitcher Chris Sampson and infielder Drew Sutton on Thursday.
The 25-year-old Towles, who will make $401,500 in 2009, hit .137 with five doubles, four home runs and 16 runs batted in over 54 games during three separate stints with Houston in 2008.
Sampson will earn $449,000 for the upcoming season after posting a 6-4 record and a 4.22 earned run average in 54 appearances, including 11 starts this past season. The 30-year-old right-hander struck out 61 and walked 23 over 117 1/3 innings in what was his third big league season. In three seasons with Houston, Sampson is 15-13 with a 4.12 ERA in 90 appearances (33 starts).
Sutton, 25, slugged 20 homers and knocked in 69 runs with a .317 average en route to being named a Texas League midseason and postseason All-Star for Houston's Double-A affiliate Corpus Christi in 2008. He will earn $400,000 in 2009.