KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -Reliever Yasuhiko Yabuta agreed Wednesday to a two-year contract with the Royals and will compete for a spot as Kansas City's primary setup man.
The 34-year-old right-hander spent 12 seasons with the Chiba Lotte Marines in Japan's Pacific League, a team managed by Trey Hillman before he was hired by the Royals after the season. Yabuta has a 44-59 career record with nine saves and a 4.03 ERA in 343 appearances, including 86 starts.
Yabuta was 4-6 with four saves and a 2.73 ERA in 58 relief outings this year. He walked 10 in 62 2-3 innings and struck out 45.
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