Rangers haven’t talked to Nelson Cruz about Miami New Times report

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Alex Rodriguez is getting all the headlines, but Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz was also among the players that yesterday’s Miami New Times report linked to a biogenesis clinic that sold performance-enhancing drugs.

Rangers boss Nolan Ryan was asked about the story and said the team hasn’t spoken to Cruz about it, via Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas:

When something like that happens, I think we need to let things settle down. It’s an ongoing investigation by Major League Baseball, so that’s kind of the position we’ve taken.

And of course because Nelson Cruz isn’t Alex Rodriguez no one is suggesting the Rangers should release him or try to void his contract or banish him to the moon or any of that fun stuff.

T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com speculated yesterday that even if Cruz were to be suspended the Rangers would likely stay in-house with a short-term replacement.

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.