This is just sad.
Braves left-hander Jonny Venters’ comeback from the second Tommy John elbow surgery of his career has been halted to due another torn ulnar collateral ligament. Which means the once-dominant setup man may be headed for a third Tommy John surgery.
Venters had a 2.22 ERA and 258 strikeouts in 230 innings for the Braves from 2010-2012 while averaging 94.5 miles per hour with his fastball, but hasn’t pitched since October 3, 2012 and is now looking at the possibility of a third consecutive lost season with his 30th birthday around the corner.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Pirates will sign reliever Felipe Rivero to a four-year contract extension that includes two club options. The total value of the deal is believed to be $22 million and each club option is worth $10 million.
Rivero, 26, did not come to an agreement with the Pirates to avoid arbitration in his first year of eligibility ahead of last Friday’s deadline. He requested a $2.9 million salary for the 2018 season while the Pirates countered at $2.4 million. This extension will cover all four years of Rivero’s arbitration eligibility and the two club options can cover his first two years of free agency as well.
Rivero was one of baseball’s best relievers last season, finishing with 21 saves, a 1.67 ERA, and an 88/20 K/BB ratio in 75 1/3 innings. The Pirates acquired him from the Nationals along with minor leaguer Taylor Hearn ahead of the 2016 non-waiver trade deadline in the Mark Melancon deal.
Presumably, Rivero’s extension was in the works before he knew anything about the Andrew McCutchen trade. He made a couple of tweets following this afternoon’s news. In one, he used only the “facepalm” emoji. The other was a .gif of The Office character Jim Halpert yelling, “What is going on?”