Despite latest elbow injury, Jamie Moyer isn’t ready to hang ’em up

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When Jamie Moyer was shut down from the Dominican Winter League last week due to an elbow injury — his second such injury since July — the natural assumption was that his career was over. We should probably all know better than that by now.

Moyer hadn’t heard the results of the MRI on his left elbow as of Thursday night, but told Larry LaRue of the Tacoma News Tribune that they are basically irrelevant. He plans to pitch again.

“My plans are to get healthy and continue pitching,” Moyer said, who added that Tommy John surgery “wouldn’t change my plans.”

Moyer, who turns 48 next week, went 9-9 with a 4.84 ERA and 1.10 WHIP in 19 starts this past season with the Phillies. He is a free agent this winter.

Tommy John surgery would mean a long road back for someone pushing 50 years old, but the latter part of Moyer’s career has already flown in the face of conventional wisdom. Who are we to doubt him now?

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.