Jayson Werth in Nationals’ lineup despite foot infection

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From Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post comes word that Nationals outfielder Jayson Werth is in the starting lineup for Sunday afternoon’s series finale against the Royals despite being diagnosed on Saturday with an infection in his right foot.

The exact type and extent of the infection is unclear, but Werth has likely been prescribed medication and he told Kilgore and other reporters on Sunday morning that he feels “good enough to play.”

The 34-year-old is batting .414/.512/.643 in 84 plate appearances this month for the Nationals, who are trying to fight their way into the National League Central-dominated National League Wild Card hunt.

Washington is currently 12 games back of Atlanta in the National League East.

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.