Manny Ramirez not close to returning from the disabled list

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Manny Ramirez has been on the disabled list since July 17 with a strained right calf and yesterday manager Joe Torre said “it’ll be more than a week” before he returns to the Dodgers.
Ken Gurnick of MLB.com reports that Ramirez is currently rehabbing at the team complex in Arizona and has not yet been scheduled for any game action, so assuming he’ll need a minor-league rehab assignment of some length Ramirez may still be several weeks from potentially coming off the DL.
Ramirez has missed 39 of the Dodgers’ first 100 games while spending three different stints on the DL, but has hit .317/.409/.516 in the 61 games he’s been healthy enough to play to essentially match last year’s production and post an OPS above .900 for the 15th time in 16 seasons.
Torre has been mixing and matching Xavier Paul, Garret Anderson, and Jamey Carroll as the fill-ins for Ramirez in left field.

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.