Orioles slugger Chris Davis entered Tuesday night’s series opener against the Pirates with just three home runs on the year. He doubled that total in three straight at-bats, smacking a two-run shot in the top of the fifth inning, a solo shot in the seventh inning, and another two-run shot in the ninth inning.
Davis watched his OPS jump from .725 to .844. It was the second three-homer game of his career. Here’s the third blast of the night, with a great call from O’s play-by-play man Gary Thorne …
The Orioles wound up defeating the host Bucs in a 9-2 rout and are now 23-20 on the season.
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.