Link-O-Rama: '… but the sum@!$%# can hit'

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* Here’s the scouting report on recent call-up Barbaro Canizares that an unnamed Braves player gave to Dave O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution:
“I heard he can’t run, can’t throw, and can’t field, but the sum@!$%#
can hit.” I’m not sure about the running, throwing, and fielding part,
but the 29-year-old Canizares hit .344 in 58 games at Triple-A and
carries a .318 career batting average.

* White Sox general manager Kenny Williams said yesterday that he’s not ready to blow up the 27-33 team yet, but Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times speculates that veterans like Jermaine Dye, Octavio Dotel, and perhaps even Bobby Jenks “could be elsewhere before the trade deadline.”

*
Jake Fox went 5-for-12 with two doubles for the Cubs after hitting .424
with 17 homers and 51 RBIs in 41 games at Triple-A, but still couldn’t
avoid a trip back to Iowa.

* Is the Angels’ middle infield at Triple-A better than the big-league version?

* David Ortiz’s modest hot streak may be put on hold because of interleague play.

Jonny Venters is still pitching

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Lefty reliever Jonny Venters was among a handful of players the Rays signed to minor league contracts, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.

Venters, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2012 and has logged just 27 2/3 innings in the minors in the meantime due to a continuous battle with his elbow. According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Venters has undergone four — four! — Tommy John surgeries.

When he was healthy, Venters was a fearsome late-game option for the Braves. He posted a 1.95 ERA with 93 strikeouts in 83 innings in 2010, and a 1.84 ERA with 96 strikeouts in 88 innings in 2011. His first-half performance in 2011 earned him a spot on the National League All-Star roster.

Venters has spent the last two years in the Rays’ system and he’ll try to make it a third.