John Dennis of WEEI reports that the Red Sox and Cubs will start talks regarding compensation for Theo Epstein today. As reported earlier, it’s likely to involve either non-prospecty minor leaguers or cash, with some suggesting yesterday that the Sox would just prefer the cash.
I wish I could listen in on those negotiations. I’d want to know if, in light of the Sox’ front office totally throwing Theo and everyone under the bus yesterday, the Cubs took the bold position of saying something like “from what we can tell we’re doing you a favor. You give us something.”
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.