Thursday afternoon job opportunity

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Ever dreamed of being a ballboy or ballgirl for a major league club?  No?  Oh.  Um, well, you can, if you want.  From the Baltimore Sun’s Peter Schmuck:

The Orioles just announced this year’s
ballboy and ballgirl tryouts
. The club will hold interviews on
March 6 at noon at the Warehouse for anyone 18 or older who wants to
spend the summer in an Orioles jersey, but making substantially less
than the $400,000 major league minimum salary.

One has to wonder what takes place in these ballboy and ballgirl “interviews.”  Can you field a grounder?  Able to identify the youngest kid in the first five rows?  And can you toss that kid the ball?  Good, now steer clear of balls in play.  There are worse ways to spend a summer.

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.