After Antonio Bastardo gave up one run on two hits in an inning of work Wednesday night against the Twins, he decided to take his frustrations out on a squat machine in the weight room at Target Field. Bad idea.
Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Bastardo walked away with a large gash above his left eye, which was “nearly swollen shut” after last night’s game. Phillies manager Charlie Manuel told Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com this morning that he could have an infection. The southpaw is unlikely to pitch today and could be rested for a couple more days until the swelling goes down.
And no, it is not OK to use Bastardo’s injury as an excuse to avoid the gym this weekend.
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.