Mariners bench Brendan Ryan for accountability issue

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Brendan Ryan is taking a seat for Tuesday’s game against the Rangers due to an accountability issue, manager Eric Wedge told Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times.

The only additional detail provided was that it was unrelated to the poor throw Ryan made in Monday night’s game.

Ryan might have been late to arrive to the ballpark, as was known to happen too often in St. Louis. The Cardinals made it clear that Ryan’s attitude played a role in the decision to ship him to Seattle prior to the 2011 season.

Ryan is one of the game’s best defensive shortstops, but he’s also a lifetime .256/.314/.340 hitter. He needs to clean up his act if he expects to remain in the league once he loses a step.

Munenori Kawasaki is starting at shortstop for the Mariners tonight.

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.