The Brewers-Padres game ended … oddly. But I think the umps got it right.

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How did the Brewers’ winning streak end? One run down, a man on second and Martin Maldonado being called out for interfering with a ball in fair territory:

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think this was a botched call as many have said this morning. Yes, Maldonado’s foot is still in the batter’s box when the ball hits him, but my reading of the rule is that he can be out even if only one foot is out of the box, contrary to what the broadcaster said in this clip:

Rule 6.05 says:

6.05 A batter is out when—(g) His fair ball touches him before touching a fielder. If the batter is in a legal positionin the batter’s box, see Rule 6.03, and, in the umpire’s judgment, there was nointention to interfere with the course of the ball, a batted ball that strikes the batteror his bat shall be ruled a foul ball…

Rule 6.03, defining the legal position in the box says:

The batter’s legal position shall be with both feet within the batter’s box.

Thus, if only one foot is in the box, he is no longer legally in the box, thus he would be out. This, in effect, is no different than if a batted ball struck him running between first and second.

I get why Ron Roenicke was mad — it’s a close call and you hate to see a game end like that — but I think the ump got it right.

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.