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Astros sign Chad Qualls to 2-year, $6 million contract

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The 35-year old returns to the place he called home for the first four seasons of his career.

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The Astros have signed reliever Chad Qualls to a two-year contract with reliever Chad Qualls that includes a club option for 2016, according to a team announcementKen Rosenthal of FOXSports.com notes that the deal is worth $6 million over the first two years, with a $3 million team option for the third year.

Qualls, 35, rebounded nicely from a 2012 season that saw him pitch for three different teams by posting a a 5-2 record and 2.61 ERA in 62 innings out of the Marlins' bullpen in 2013. The Marlins had interest in bringing him back to Miami, but he ultimately decided to return to the team that originally drafted him. Qualls spent four seasons (2004-2007) in Houston to start his career, posting a a 3.39 ERA in 262 games as the team's setup man. Since, he has pitched for the Diamondbacks, Rays, Padres, Phillies, Yankees, Pirates and Marlins in six seasons.

The signing of Qualls is the third significant move of the week for the Astros, who also added Dexter Fowler in a trade from the Rockies and signed Scott Feldman to a three-year, $30 million deal. By adding controllable veterans to a young core of developing players, the team hopes to build a roster that can contend in the next two or three seasons.

As Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle reported yesterday, the Astros have indicated that they have around $30 million to spend on additions this offseason. With Fowler ($7.35 million), Feldman ($10 million) and Qualls ($3 million), the team seems to have about $9-10 million left to spend this winter. General manager Jeff Luhnow has expressed that they are still looking to add a reliever similar to Qualls, and will likely be active at the Winter Meetings this week in Orlando.