Cubs prospect Jorge Soler has been suspended five games by the Florida State League following last night’s incident in which he grabbed a bat and went after the opposing team’s dugout.
Soler was dragged away by coaches before any physical contact was made and the whole thing followed the benches clearing after Soler and an infielder got tangled up at second base.
Team president Theo Epstein addressed the situation shortly before the suspension was handed down, telling reporters that Soler is “tremendously remorseful” and the Cubs “condemn the action but support the player.”
Soler, who defected from Cuba last year at age 20, signed a nine-year, $30 million contract with the Cubs and has hit .318 with seven homers and an .895 OPS in 40 pro games.
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.