Lim Chang-yong released by Cubs

March 25, 2014

By Lee Kyutae

Trying to become a Major Leaguer at age 37, especially coming off major elbow surgery, proved to be a much more difficult task than Lim Chang-yong had anticipated. The South Korean pitcher, who will turn 38 in June, has been released by the Chicago Cubs for the second time.

Chicago Cubs released pitcher Lim Chang-yong on Monday. Samsung Lions, Lim’s former team in Korea Baseball Organization, said it is considering adding him. (AP)

Chicago Cubs released pitcher Lim Chang-yong on Monday. Samsung Lions, Lim’s former team in Korea Baseball Organization, said it is considering adding him. (AP)

The Cubs’ official website stated that Lim was “granted his unconditional release” on Monday. He is now a free agent.

The right-hander with a sidearm delivery made his MLB debut last year as a September call-up, but he failed to impress after coming off a Tommy John surgery to repair a torn ligament in his pitching elbow in July 2012.

Lim appeared in six games for the Cubs, posting a 5.40 ERA in five innings with no win-loss record. Walking more batters (7) than innings pitched (5), and strikeouts (5) left a lot to be desired.

He was non-tendered by the Cubs in December but earned an invitation to spring training for this year. In four preseason games, Lim threw four innings and gave up two earned runs on two hits and two walks for a 4.50 ERA.

He was first optioned to the Cubs’ Triple-A affiliate in Iowa on Saturday before getting released outright.

Lim began his professional career in the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) in 1995 and spent 13 seasons with two different teams. He pitched the next five seasons for the Yakult Swallows in the Central League of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) before joining the Cubs.

Lim led the KBO in saves three times and has the most career saves by a South Korean pitcher in the NPB with 128.

The Lions, for whom Lim played from 1999 to 2007, retain the prior right to negotiate with the pitcher and showed immediate interest in re-signing him.

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