The Cubs have agreed to re-sign veteran righty Junichi Tazawa, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network (Twitter link). It’s a minors deal that would pay $900K in the big leagues, per Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune (via Twitter).
The 32-year-old Tazawa had been cut loose by the Cubs over the weekend. It appears that he was afforded an opportunity to test the open market when it was decided he wouldn’t crack the Chicago Opening Day roster. With no superior chances to be found, he landed back as a depth option for the Cubs, who now avoid paying Tazawa the $100K retention bonus to which he’d have been entitled as an Article XX(B) free agent (i.e. a player with six-plus years of service who finished the preceding season on a Major League roster but signed a minor league deal in the offseason).
Tazawa produced good results in his 5 2/3 innings in camp, racking up nine strikeouts without permitting any runs, but has struggled quite a bit in recent seasons. He long produced solid peripherals, if not always the desired results, during his run with the Red Sox. But over the past two seasons, Tazawa carries an ugly 6.16 ERA with 7.1 K/9 and 4.1 BB/9 over 83 1/3 MLB innings.