On December 18 , 2000 — Astros sign first baseman Jeff Bagwell to a five-year, $83 million dollar deal, assuring he will stay with the Astros for most, if not all, of his major league career. In his first ten seasons in Houston, Bagwell has averaged 31.9 homers and 109.3 RBIs per year. Bagwell will retire after the 2005 season with 449 Homeruns he finished in the top 10 in MVP voting 6 of his 15 seasons winning the award in 1994 and the Rookie of the year in 1990.  A clear hall of Famer he will wait until 2017 to be inducted because of unfounded PED allegations.

The contract – a 6-year contract extension worth up to $96 million. The deal includes a $15 million bonus deferred over 2002 to 2006. In addition, a large portion of each year’s salary is deferred 2 years, with interest. The base salary for each season with the deferred amounts (in parenthesis) is: 2002 – $8M ($2M), 2003 – $10M ($3M), 2004 – $13M ($6M), 2005 – $15M ($8M), 2006 – $17M ($10M). His last season under contract is 2007, which is a club option worth $18 million. If that option is not exercised, a buyout of $12 million is required.

“It comes down to being a Houston Astro,” Bagwell said. “I’ve been here 10 years, and that means something to me.”

Astros owner Drayton McLane Jr. had called signing Bagwell the team’s top priority.

“He’s certainly a kind, thoughtful human being whom I call a friend, and someone I really enjoy,” McLane said after presenting Bagwell’s wife, Ericka, a bouquet of flowers.

“Nowadays when you say Houston Astros, you think of [Craig] Biggio and Bagwell, and I’m proud of that,” Bagwell said. “I want people to continue to say that. I want to be a Houston Astro the rest of my career and retire, and with the help of the organization they made it an easy decision.”