Japan’s Softbank signs LaHair

The Softbank Hawks of the Japanese Pacific League say they have

signed former Chicago Cubs infielder Bryan LaHair to a two-year,

$4.5 million contract.

LaHair, who was named to the National League All-Star team last

season, batted .286 with 14 home runs and 30 RBIs before the

All-Star break but fell to .202 with two home runs and 10 RBIs

after it.

After losing the first base job to top prospect Anthony Rizzo in

June, LeHair was a bench player for the remainder of the

season.

An outstanding run producer in six Triple-A seasons through

2011, LaHair is being looked at as a first baseman and designated

hitter for the Hawks, who finished third in the Pacific League

following back-to-back pennants in 2010 and 2011.