Report: Gary Carter’s brain tumors likely malignant

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In some very distressing news, doctors from Duke University are “90 percent certain” that the tumors on Gary Carter’s brain are malignant.

The New York Daily News reports that an official diagnosis is expected next week after Carter underwent tests today.

Examined after dealing with headaches and forgetfulness of late, Carter was found to have four small brain tumors on May 21.

If the tumors are proven to be malignant, the 57-year-old Carter is expected to begin undergoing chemotherapy immediately.

“It was very hard for all of us to hear, as we have been hoping and praying that  the tumors would be benign,” one of Carter’s daughters wrote on the family website.  “Lots of tears have been shed in the hospital room today, and we are all a bit scared of the unknown.”

Carter, a Hall of Fame catcher who played for the Expos, Mets, Giants and Dodgers in 19 big-league seasons, retired in 1992.

“(The doctor) wants us all to team up and help Dad through the battle ahead,”  Carter’s daughter wrote. “He said that this IS treatable and they will attack it with the same kind of vigor that Dad displayed on the baseball diamond!”

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.