Joaquin Benoit expected to avoid the disabled list

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Padres closer Joaquin Benoit hasn’t appeared in a game since last Wednesday due to soreness in his throwing shoulder, but Dennis Lin of UT-San Diego reports that he’s expected to avoid the disabled list.

Benoit had no issues after he threw long toss and a five-minute bullpen session today at Dodger Stadium. Padres manager Bud Black believes he could be able to return to action tomorrow or Saturday.

Benoit, who inherited the closer role after the Huston Street trade, has compiled a 1.64 ERA, seven saves, and a 59/14 K/BB ratio over 49 1/3 innings this season.

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.