- Bruce Levine, Chicago baseball beat reporter
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Ramirez, who will be playing in the final year of a five-year, $75 million contract, had to inform the Cubs within five days of the end of the World Series whether he would become a free agent.
If Ramirez, 32, would have accepted the option to become a free agent, it would have voided his $14.6 million contract for 2011. The Cubs hold an option on Ramirez in 2012 for $15 million. The Cubs must pay Ramirez a $2 million buyout if they do not pick up that option.
Plagued by a slow start and injuries, Ramirez batted .241 with 25 home runs and 83 RBIs last season.
Bruce Levine covers baseball for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000.
Chicago Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez has declined his option to become a free agent and will return to the Cubs in 2011.