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AP source: Yu Darvish, Cubs reach $126 million, 6-year deal

FILE - In this Nov. 1, 2017, file photo, Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Yu Darvish throws during the first inning of Game 7 of baseball's World Series against the Houston Astros, in Los Angeles. Perhaps 100 free agents still seek contracts as the start of spring training workouts on Feb. 14 draws near, a group that includes J.D. Martinez, Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Jake Arrieta and Yu Darvish. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum, File)

AP source: Yu Darvish, Cubs reach $126 million, 6-year deal

By JAY COHEN, AP Sports Writer

CHICAGO (AP) — A person with direct knowledge of the deal tells The Associated Press that ace Yu Darvish and the Chicago Cubs have reached agreement on a $126 million, six-year contract.

The person spoke Saturday on condition of anonymity because there was no official announcement. The deal was first reported by The Athletic.

Darvish's deal came less than a week before the Cubs were set to begin spring training. The 31-year-old right-hander was among the top players available in a slow-moving free agent market this winter.

Darvish finished last season with the Los Angeles Dodgers, helping them knock out the defending champion Cubs in the playoffs to reach the World Series. The Japanese star is expected to take the rotation spot of Jake Arrieta, who became a free agent after finishing the year in Chicago.

The Cubs have reached the NL Championship Series in each of the last three years. In 2016, they won their first World Series crown since 1908.

Darvish is a four-time All-Star, but has had injury problems. He began last year with Texas and was traded to the Dodgers in July, going a combined 10-12 with a 3.86 ERA.

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