Weird spring training injuries are coming in fast and furious now, but this one is on another level.
Journeyman catcher Eliezer Alfonzo hasn’t arrived at Dodgers camp yet because he’s stuck in Venezuela while infected with dengue fever.
According to my doctor, WebMD, dengue fever “is a painful, debilitating mosquito-borne disease caused by any one of four closely related dengue viruses.”
Symptoms can last up to 10 days and include:
– Sudden, high fever
– Severe headaches
– Pain behind the eyes
– Severe joint and muscle pain
– Skin rash, which appears three to four days after the onset of fever
– Mild bleeding (such a nose bleed, bleeding gums, or easy bruising)
Yeesh, that sounds absolutely terrible. Also: “Mild bleeding” would be a good band name.
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.