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Astros avoid arbitration, sign World Series MVP George Springer to 2-year, $24 million deal Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

The Houston Astros is keeping Major League Baseball’s (MLB’s) most valuable player – for now.

This week, franchise officials announced they signed outfielder George Springer to a new contract worth $24 million over two years.

His new contract reportedly allowed the team and the player to avoid an arbitration hearing prior to spring training set to open later this month; the agreement also boosts Springer’s annual salary from $3.9 million in 2017 to $12 million for the upcoming season.

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League stats show the 28-year-old outfielder is coming off his career-best season, with a .283 batting average, 34 home runs and 85 runs batted in, mostly from the leadoff spot in the batting order.

He also ended up with a .367 on-base percentage and a .522 slugging percentage, giving him a career-high .889 On-base Plus Slugging (OPS).

During the Astros’ post-season run, Springer hit .292 with six home runs and nine RBIs; he hit five of his home runs and drove in seven runs in the Astros’ seven-game World Series victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers, earning him World Series Most Valuable Player honors.

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And the Springer signing keeps much of the team’s core intact:

Last month, the Astros also signed other key players from their World Champion squad – another agreement reached in order to avoid arbitration.

The team signed left-handed starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel, right-handed starting pitchers Lance McCullers, Jr., and Brad Peacock, catcher/designated hitter Evan Gattis, and outfielder Jake Marisnick.

Somehow, baseball season is back already, Houston. Play ball, y’all!