Jon Miller rejects ESPN’s offer to do radio

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This isn’t terribly surprising, but Jon Miller — the play-by-play voice of Sunday Night Baseball for 20 years — has rejected ESPN’s offer to stay on and do the Sunday night games on the radio, reports Richard Sandomir.  As you recall, he and Joe Morgan were not invited back to do TV.

This decision isn’t terribly surprising.  It’s already plenty hard for Miller — based in San Francisco, where he calls Giants games — to fly wherever he needs to go each weekend for the ESPN game. And that “wherever he needs to go” is usually the east coast given ESPN’s programming choices.  That may be worth doing for TV, but for radio? Eh, stay home and enjoy a weekend homestand once in a while, ya know?

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.