The Brewers give Corey Hart a three-year extension

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UPDATE: Buster tweets that Hart’s extension is for $26.5 million over three years.

9:30 A.M.: The subject of trade rumors for weeks, Corey Hart remained a Brewer after Saturday’s deadline hit.  And he’ll remain a Brewer for some time into the future as well, given that Milwaukee just announced that Hart has agreed to a three-year extension
through the 2013 season.

According to Tom Haudricourt, the deal buys out the final year of
Hart’s arbitration eligibility in 2011 as well as
his first two years of free agency.

No financial terms were released but Haudricourt suspects that the deal is worth close
to $25 million based on what he’s making now and what he could expect to get in arbitration.

Hart is hitting .288/.346/.565 this season. If he holds up over the next two months it will certainly be his best season in the majors, but it’s not like this is so far removed from his past performance that we can’t expect him to be productive over the next three seasons and, more or less, worth his contract.

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.