The Mets scope Matsui's meds

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From an NPB Tracker tweet, the Mets have asked Hideki Matsui’s agent for the results of his latest physical. Matsui’s that is, not his agent’s. Those would be rather scary, I’d imagine, what with all of the cigar chomping those sorts of fellows do.

Probably just idle curiosity on the Mets’ part, but is it possible that they’re actually thinking about Matsui as an everyday outfielder? Even if his physical looks good, I can’t see him lasting a full season out in the grass.

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.