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Cubs decline option on reliever Fujikawa for next season

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CHICAGO — The Chicago Cubs have declined their option for next season on reliever Kyuji Fujikawa, making him eligible for free agency.

The option was for $5.5 million with a $500,000 buyout.

A longtime closer in Japan, the right-hander signed with the Cubs before the 2013 season but never delivered the way the organization hoped. He tore a ligament in his pitching elbow in his first year with the Cubs and underwent Tommy John surgery.

Fujikawa returned in August. He was 1-1 with a 5.04 ERA and two saves in 27 appearances over two seasons with the Cubs.

The team announced the move on Thursday.

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