Carlos Lee is staying in Texas, but not with the Rangers.
A source told ESPN's Jayson Stark that the Houston Astros were set to announce Friday afternoon that they have signed the free-agent slugger to a six-year, $100 million deal. 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 contract and a limited no-trade for the final two years.
General manager Tim Purpura declined comment.
The Astros were one of several teams bidding for Lee, joining the Philadelphia Phillies, who failed to land Alfonso Soriano; Baltimore Orioles, who Stark previously reported had made serious overtures to Lee; and San Francisco Giants.
Houston went into the offseason looking for help with an offense that finished last in the NL in batting average and struggled to score runs despite the presence of All-Star first baseman Lance Berkman, who had 45 homers and 136 RBI and finished third in NL MVP voting.
Lee hit 28 homers in 102 games for the Brewers before the Rangers picked him up before the trade deadline in July. His power numbers dipped after that, but he finished with combined totals of 37 home runs and 116 RBI. He hit .300, including .322 in 59 games with the Rangers.
Texas grabbed Lee in a six-player trade with plans to contend for the AL West title and sign him to a long-term deal, but neither happened.
Lee's signing was the third major free-agent loss for the Rangers in the last two weeks. Mark DeRosa, a valuable starter at several positions, signed with the Chicago Cubs, and All-Star center fielder Gary Matthews Jr. signed a five-year, $50 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels this weekAngels