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"I'm definitely going to be a free agent, but hopefully it happens a little bit quicker than last year," Fowler said on "SportsCenter." "You can't control what goes on, but I loved my time in Chicago and I'm definitely not counting them out, but we'll see what God has planned for us now."
Fowler became a free agent after his first season with the Cubs in 2015, rejecting a one-year, $15.8 million qualifying offer from the club last November, and that process dragged on for most of the offseason. He eventually came close to a three-year deal with the Orioles in February, but the Cubs swooped back in and re-signed him to a one-year deal in a surprising move.
Fowler made $8 million in 2016 and would have made $9 million next season if both he and the Cubs elected to exercise the mutual option in his contract. Chicago could still extend a one-year, $17.2 million qualifying offer to Fowler.
The 30-year-old switch-hitter played in 125 games this season, making his first All-Star team. He batted .276/.393/.447 with 13 homers, 48 RBIs and 13 steals. Fowler hit three homers during the Cubs' postseason run, including one to lead off Game 7 Wednesday.
Andrew Simon is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.