AL All-Star voting updates

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The league just announced the latest in the All-Star Game voting for the American League. Here’s where it stands. The only particularly close race right now is for the third outfield slot, which is a three-way deal between Nelson Cruz, Jose Bautista and Adam Jones.

Catcher
Mike Napoli: 1,640,160
Joe Mauer: 912,997

First Base
Prince Fielder: 1,421,786
Paul Konerko: 1,147,089

Second Base
Ian Kinsler: 1,920,364
Robinson Cano: 1,732,359

Shortstop
Derek Jeter: 2,419,508
Elvis Andrus: 1,448,544

Third Base
Adrian Beltre: 1,634,057
Miguel Cabrera: 1,313,063

Outfield
Josh Hamilton: 3,833,504
Curtis Granderson:2,033,239
Nelson Cruz: 1,398,534
Jose Bautista: 1,357,784
Adam Jones: 1,318,091

Designated Hitter
David Ortiz: 1,758,369
Michael Young: 1,396,802

The National League voting will be updated tomorrow.

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.