Houston — Doug Fister was impressed by what he perceived as the Houston Astros’ will to win.
“The choice to come here is driven from the top down,” the former Tigers pitcher said Thursday after agreeing to a one-year, $7 million contract. “We’re trying to win a World Series here, and that’s your ultimate goal. That’s why you come to the ballpark every day.”
Fister was 5-7 with a 4.19 ERA in 15 starts and 10 relief appearances last season for Washington. He was 16-6 with a 2.41 ERA for the Nationals in 2014, when he finished eighth in NL Cy Young Award voting.
“We feel good about the person that we’re getting as well as the pitcher that we’re getting,” Astros general manager Jeff Lunhow said. “There were other options out there. We looked at a lot of them, but we feel good about this as the piece that makes the Astros the strongest for 2016.”
The 31-year-old right-hander is 65-63 with a 3.42 ERA in 167 starts and 13 relief appearances in seven major league seasons that also included time with Seattle (2009-11) and Detroit (2011-13). His 1.77 walks per nine innings is the lowest among active pitchers with 1,000 or more innings.
“I know Doug Fister makes us better,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “I know he’s going to make big starts for us and, ultimately, when you wake up in January and you’re in the manager’s chair and Jeff calls and says we’ve got Doug Fister signed to a contract, I wake up a pretty happy man.”
Around the horn
Right-hander Ivan Nova and the Yankees have agreed to a one-year, $4.1 million contract and avoided salary arbitration.
The agreement was $100,000 under the midpoint between the $4.6 million Nova had asked for in arbitration and the $3.8 million he had been offered. He can make $100,000 in performance bonuses.
... A person with knowledge of the situation says the Rays have agreed to acquire outfielder Corey Dickerson from the Rockies for left-handed reliever Jake McGee.
The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday because the trade has not been announced. Prospects also are involved in the deal.
... Minor league outfielder Rymer Liriano, a former top prospect in the Padres organization, is headed to the rebuilding Brewers in exchange for minor league reliever Trevor Seidenberger.
... Walt Williams, an outfielder who played for four major league teams in the 1960s and ’70s and was best known for his nickname, “No Neck,” has died. He was 72.
His wife, Ester, said her husband died of a heart attack Saturday in Abilene, Texas. He was 72.
... Major League Baseball is introducing a new style for spring training uniforms, adding patches on caps and jersey sleeves that resemble highway road signs with state initials.