The Red Sox are all about second chances

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As Drew wrote last night, the Sox gave Scott Schoenweis a job in the bullpen after less than a week in camp. Is this evidence that, as I mentioned in my preview, that the Sox’ bullpen is an area of concern, or are they merely taking a chance in the hopes of redeeming an obviously wounded soul?

Maybe the latter, because the Red Sox seem to be all about redemption this week, what with their choice of Keri Hilson to sing the National Anthem before Sunday night’s season opener against the Yankees. This is the same Keri Hilson who totally screwed up the anthem before the Lakers-Hawks game the other night. What, they couldn’t get Enrico Pallazzo?

Frankly, I have a lot more faith in Schoenweis.

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.