The 37-year-old Japanese left-hander notched a dreadful 5.54 ERA in 50⅓ innings in 2012 between the Los Angeles Angels and Pittsburgh Pirates. His peripheral numbers were solid, though, as he struck out 24.5% of the batters he faced while only walking 6.6%.
Takahashi began his career stateside with the New York Mets in 2010. He split the season between the starting rotation and the bullpen and posted and impressive 3.61 ERA. His performance earned him a two-year deal worth $8 million from the Angels. He spent the entire 2011 season in the Angels' bullpen, serving as a steady left-handed set-up man and posting a 3.44 ERA. A run of hard luck in the 2012 season ballooned his ERA to 4.93 before the Angels placed him waivers and he was claimed by the Pirates. He became a free agent at the end of the season.
The veteran lefty could earn a spot in the Cubs' bullpen out of spring training.