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Fujikawa nears return from injury

Kyodo

Chicago Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer indicated on Tuesday that Kyuji Fujikawa, who is rehabbing with the team’s minor league affiliate after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, is close to making a comeback to the top team.

Fujikawa, 34, had the ligament-transplant surgery in June last year. Hoyer said the right-hander will make at least one more rehab outing with Triple-A Iowa.

“He’s getting there, and the end of his rehab stint is coming,” Hoyer said. “I think he can see the light at the end of the tunnel.”

The former Hanshin Tigers closer has appeared in a total of 10 minor league games. He has a 2.25 earned run average while striking out 12 over 9⅔ innings in four games at Iowa.

Fujikawa, who pitched in back-to-back games on Saturday and Sunday, was scheduled to pitch again Tuesday.