Marco Scutaro’s Cactus League debut pushed back

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Marco Scutaro was scheduled to make his Cactus League debut on Sunday or Monday, but his back problems are persisting and now the Giants are keeping him out for the time being, Alex Pavlovic reports for the Mercury News.

Manager Bruce Bochy says that if Scutaro isn’t ready to go at the end of next week, the Giants will have to go with a “Plan B” at second base on Opening Day. “Plan B” candidates include Tony Abreu and Joaquin Arias.

Scutaro, 38, posted a career-high 112 adjusted OPS last season, his second with the Giants. He is in the second year of a three-year, $20 million deal signed in December 2012.

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.