Tae-Kyun Kim's agent approached the Chiba Lotte Marines about 2 weeks ago to ask that he his option not be exercised for the 2012 season. While the Marines still haven't made an official decision, it seems they are leaning towards going along with Kim's request. The two sides are expected to meet again in August to work out a final decision.
"I think we're heavily leaning towards his departure," said Akira Ishikawa, managing director of the team. "We want to go with whatever is best for him."
UPDATE 7/28 @ 11:10am - According to the Korean media, the recent earthquake is apparently one of the reasons why Kim doesn't want to play in Japan. Seems he's no longer confident he can play in Japan.