Matt Williams: if you can dance you can play infield

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You never see Jeter out at nightclubs, do ya? Matt Williams rests his case:

“I always ask the infielders if they can dance or not . . .If they can dance, then they can play infield. If they can’t dance, we need to get them lessons, then they’ll be able to play infield. So that’s all it really is. You play through the baseball and create rhythm and all that stuff. You become more accurate, all those things.

“They always play music during batting practice, right . . . And I would always try to get my ground balls according to the music. I developed that type of rhythm according to what’s playing on the scoreboard. With the beat.”

Of course the only song they ever played during batting practice back in Williams’ day was “Centerfield” and that song is both awful and undanceable. If Williams is right about his theory, how the heck did he ever win those four gold gloves?

Jonny Venters is back in the majors

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The Rays announced on Wednesday that the club purchased the contract of lefty reliever Jonny Venters from Triple-A Durham. The 33-year-old hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2012 due to a continuous battle with arm injuries. The Rays note that he has undergone two and a half Tommy John surgeries, which is a number that seems to be in dispute.

Venters signed a minor league contract with the Rays in December. With Durham so far this season, he gave up two runs (one earned) on four hits and five walks with six strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.

Before the injuries, Venters was among the best relievers in 2010-11. In those two seasons, he posted a combined 1.89 ERA with 189 strikeouts and 82 walks in 171 innings.