The Chicago Cubs say they have designated first baseman Bryan LaHair for assignment because he and the club are pursuing an opportunity for him in Japan.
An All-Star last season, LaHair batted .259 with 16 home runs and 40 RBIs in 130 games. He originally signed with the Cubs as a minor league free agent in December 2009.
The Cubs made several other moves on Tuesday, acquiring right-handed pitching prospect Barret Loux and a player to be named from the Texas Rangers for right-hander Jake Brigham. They also assigned right-hander Carlos Gutierrez outright to Triple-A Iowa after he cleared waivers and selected the contracts of four players — right-hander Trey McNutt from Double-A Tennessee, infielder Christian Villanueva from Class-A Daytona, infielder Logan Watkins from Tennessee and right-hander Robert Whitenack from Daytona.