The Chicago Cubs activated reliever Kyuji Fujikawa off the 60-day disabled list on Wednesday afternoon. Fujikawa has been rehabbing from Tommy John surgery this season after missing most of the past two seasons.
In order to make room for Fujikawa on the 40-man roster and Major League roster, the Cubs designated outfielder Nate Schierholtz for assignment.
Schierholtz signed with the Cubs prior to the 2013 season. Schierholtz had a career year with the Cubs in 2013 as the outfielder hit .251/.301/.470 with a wOBA of .331 and 21 home runs.
While 2013 was a career year for Schierholtz, 2014 has been a career worst for the veteran outfielder.
With the Cubs this season, Schierholtz hit .192/.240/.300 with 6 home runs and a wOBA of .242. Needless to say, the writing was on the wall that Schierholtz’s time with the Cubs was coming to an end.
As for Fujikawa, the reliever likely will slide into a middle-relief spot for the Cubs. Fujikawa was signed to be a potential closer for the Cubs last season, but injuries thwarted his initial impact. Fujikawa has a $5.5 million club option for 2015 and considering the emergence of the likes of Brian Schlitter and Neil Ramirez, the Japanese reliever may not factor into the team’s plans next season.
The Cubs can buyout the last year of Fujikawa’s contract for $500,000.