(from the Associated Press)
The Astros agreed to deals with five of their seven arbitration-eligible players Friday but are headed toward a hearing with star outfielder George Springer.
The 30-year-old Springer has requested a salary of $22.5 million and Houston has offered $17.5 million, the largest gap among the 20 major league players who swapped figures in arbitration. Springer made $12.15 million last season. A three-person panel would rule on the case next month if the sides cannot come to an agreement.
Houston reached an $8 million, one-year deal with shortstop Carlos Correa after he earned $5 million last season, and All-Star closer Roberto Osuna got a raise from $6.5 million to $10 million.
Pitchers Lance McCullers Jr. ($4.1 million), Brad Peacock ($3.9 million) and Chris Devenski ($2 million) also agreed to one-year deals.
Utility infielder Aledmys Diaz joined Springer in filing for arbitration and requested $2.6 million. Houston offered $2 million.
Springer is a three-time All-Star and the 2017 World Series MVP. He set career highs with a .292 average, 39 home runs and 96 RBIs last season, when Houston won its third straight AL West title and lost in the World Series to Washington.
Correa played a career-low 75 games last season while dealing with a variety of injuries, including a broken rib resulting from a massage. The 2015 AL Rookie of the Year in 2015 had 21 homers, 59 RBIs and batted .279 in 2019.
Osuna led the AL with 38 saves. The 24-year-old right-hander appeared in 66 games and went 4-3 with a 2.63 ERA in his secondyear in Houston after a trade from Toronto in 2019.
Peacock is a right-handed swingman who appeared in just 23 games last season because of injuries. He went 7-6 with a 4.12 ERA.
Devenski, also a righty, went 2-3 with a 4.83 ERA in 61 games last season.
Diaz struggled with injuries in 2019 and batted .271 with nine homers and 40 RBIs in a career-low 69 games last season.