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Carlos Lee signs with Astros for 6 yrs/$100M

HOUSTON -- The Houston Astros, the NL's worst-hitting team, signed outfielder Carlos Lee and right-hander Woody Williams on Friday, bolstering their offense and a pitching staff that could be without Roger Clemens and Andy Pettitte.

Lee, a two-time All-Star left fielder who played with Texas and Milwaukee last season, signed a six-year, $100 million deal, the largest contract in Astros history. Last season was Lee's fifth straight with at least 30 home runs and 99 RBI.

"This is a historic commitment to winning," Astros general manager Tim Purpura said.

According to, the deal will pay Lee $11 million in 2007 (plus a $3 million signing bonus), $12 million in 2008, and $18.5 million for each of the last four seasons. The contract runs through the 2012 season.

A source told's Jayson Stark the only significant non-monetary clause in the contract is that Lee will have a complete no-trade clause for the first four years of the deal and a limited no-trade for the final two years.

"I won't disappoint you," the 30-year-old Lee said. "Let's go for the championship.

"I know this is a team where I have a good chance to win a championship. I've always liked this team, they're always very good, and I like this ballpark. I like a lot about Houston. That's why I told my agent this was one of the places I'd like to play."

Adding Lee will give the Astros another power threat besides All-Star first baseman Lance Berkman, who had 45 home runs and 136 RBI and finished third in NL MVP voting behind Philadelphia's Ryan Howard and St. Louis' Albert Pujols.

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