Baltimore’s Triple-A roster is littered with big names and former big leaguers, including Miguel Tejada, Jamie Moyer, Lew Ford, Pat Neshek, J.C. Romero, Joel Pineiro, Bill Hall, and Nate McLouth.
Some of them, like Ford, are thriving as they try to make it back to the majors one last time, but the 38-year-old Tejada is struggling.
He’s yet to homer in 24 games and the former MVP is hitting .270 with a measly .625 OPS while playing third base. Tejada batted just .259 with a .660 OPS in 247 games as a part-timer for the Padres, Orioles, and Giants during the previous two seasons, so it seems pretty safe to say he’s finished.
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.