Venters sharp in return from disabled list

Washington – Reliever Jonny Venters pitched two scoreless innings Sunday in his first action since returning from the disabled list for an elbow impingement. It was a welcome sign in an otherwise rough day.

Venters allowed only two baserunners – one on an error and one on a single – while coaxing five groundballs, which is a good sign for a pitcher who’s struggled much of the season with patented sinkerball. Of his 21 pitches, 15 were strikes. He struck out two and had one wild pitch.

“I felt pretty good all the way around mechanically, physically,” Venters said. “Getting the groundballs is really what tells what my stuff is doing. Any time I can go out there and get some swings early in the count and some groundballs, I feel like I’m doing something right mechanically.”

Venters, who was an uncharacteristic 3-3 with a 4.45 ERA in 40 appearances on the season, said he felt as good on the mound as he had since April.

“It was definitely the best I’ve felt in a long time,” Venters said. “I was just excited to get back out there, and to have it go pretty well was definitely something I needed. It’s something to build off of and hopefully throw some zeroes up here in a row and build a little confidence and see what happens.”

73 comments Add your comment

southern bell

July 22nd, 2012
6:27 pm

Glad that Venters is back to his old self.

Luv them Braves

July 22nd, 2012
6:47 pm

Wished he could start! We need starting pitching.

nolakid21

July 22nd, 2012
6:47 pm

Is this article going to blow up in your face too Carroll? You wrote one about how Jair was back and made up stuff about his velocity and then he fell apart like sensible people knew would happen. Why don’t you wait a little bit ok.

Biff Pocoroba

July 22nd, 2012
6:52 pm

As a Gwinnett Braves ticket holder, I wish Wren would quit dumping these rag arms on the team. These 13-2 losses 5 times a week get old.

bruce mac

July 22nd, 2012
6:52 pm

If Braves don’t acquire Grenke and a right handed bat this season is over.

BravesfaninWis

July 22nd, 2012
6:53 pm

At least 1 pitcher for the Braves looked good today. I won’t put to much stock into his performance today though. It was after all his first game back in a while. To the rest of the Braves pitchers today, you all sucked ass big time.

BravesfaninWis

July 22nd, 2012
6:55 pm

Bruce,

In all honesty, I don’t think getting Greinke will do much for this staff. I mean look at it, he would probably be good, Sheets has the demeanor to be good, Hudson the same, after that, the staff sucks. Lets just say that if a game was on the line, I wouldn’t want to see Minor, Hanson, Jurrgens, Delgado, or as of late Hudson on the mound.

Who Me?

July 22nd, 2012
6:58 pm

yeah JJ’s outlook and future with this team has to be in some question right now – what do you do with him since he clearly can’t get ahead in the count early and keep hitters off-balance? You can’t expect the offense to battle back from 8 or 9 runs down every fourth game or so, that just isn’t going to happen. JJ either needs a sports psychologist or a visit to the minors for a while, or perhaps learn how to pitch the knuckleball, because he clearly can’t continue to pitch at this level.

FW – now might be a really good time to earn your keep. Again. need some offense and need some pitching if we’re going to stretch this into October.

extremus

July 22nd, 2012
7:10 pm

The signing of Ben Sheets, at least at this point, could be the difference between the Braves making or missing the playoffs; obviously the scoreless streak has to end sooner or later but the guy is a competitor and he’s clearly got more fire in his belly than some other Braves starters.

The rest of the rotation, as anyone can clearly see by now, needs some serious help if not an outright overhaul. Tim Hudson is still the leader but he’s not had the consistency he once did. But Tommy Hanson and Jair Jurrjens are just way too inconsistent to help this team anymore. There’s always the possibility that either of them could run off a 20-win season at some point, but that would almost certainly be a one-time fluke scenario and it AIN’T happening this year. As for the fifth starter, perhaps the Braves should worry about their second through fourth for the time being.

Here’s hoping that Brandon Beachy comes back with the same performance level he had before his injury next season. Aside from that we have a hot mess through at least half the rotation.

1eyedJack

July 22nd, 2012
7:14 pm

Jurrjens is doing his best Kawakami imitation. Scott Boras can’t be happy. The Braves chances of resigning him continue to improve. ;(

Bob in Florida

July 22nd, 2012
7:19 pm

We also need a 2nd baseman. I don’t see Uggla breaking out before Oct and then it’s too late. We get to the last 3 batters and any rally is over. janish and the pitcher have an excuse. I live in south Florida and I never thought Marlins management was smart enough to unload him on us.

beachcomber

July 22nd, 2012
7:24 pm

Hopefully Venters is back and thus six inning games. The next week or two will tell the tale on that. Back or not, we still need at least a number 2 or 3 and a RH bat to make the post season show.

There on April 8, 1974

July 22nd, 2012
7:33 pm

Thank God the Braves didn’t lock up Jurrgens early in his career like they did McCann. Soeaking of McCann, his days are numbered as a Brave. I hope they don’t resign him unless it’s for like 2 years at $6m. He’s a defensive liability and his hitting stats are dropping every year for the last 5 years, I could steal a base of the guy.

Keith

July 22nd, 2012
7:44 pm

Venters truly is the bright spot from this game.

The inconsistency from the Braves has everything to do with starting pitching. If they don’t land a Greinke or someone like him, they may miss the playoffs. If they get him, I like their chances to make it in.

Hanson’s recent struggles, JJ’s not the same since last year, and Minor is on the rebound of an inconsistent year….even if you don’t see Sheets as a question mark (last 2 gms wouldn’t show that), you still have 2-3 question marks on starters right now. Only solid or more consistent is Huddy and he’s not been as good as he has been in the past. Even if Sheets comes through and is a #2 guy (that’s still to be determined), we can’t win in the playoffs with Minor/Hanson/JJ.

Wren, please take next year’s payroll openings and get us Greinke or someone like him.

GO BRAVES! :)

Keith

July 22nd, 2012
7:45 pm

Re: Bob in Florida

Uggla will break out. He always does. See his career stats and halves. He’ll get his 30 and hopefully end around .260 or .265. That will be enough.

Bob Davis

July 22nd, 2012
7:49 pm

What the hey, we might as well go after Grienke or Dempster. What have we got to lose? I mean, a lot of good the status quo is doing for us.

Nerdville

July 22nd, 2012
8:17 pm

Now just go to Miami and play like a bunch of dogs.

ATLcracker

July 22nd, 2012
8:17 pm

“The Cubs are willing to pay a very substantial portion of Soriano’s deal or take back comparably “bad” contracts to make a deal.” The Cubs need a second baseman.
Trade bad contract Uggla and Delgado for Ryan Dempster and bad contract Soriano. Move Prado to second base.
Money owed to Uggla = 36 million. Money owed to Soriano = 36 million. Its a wash and you end up with a much better team

dap01

July 22nd, 2012
8:30 pm

The Braves are more than one pitcher away. Hanson is simply nothing more than a number 3 and he is an inconsistant #3. Hudson has struggled and the other pitchers are simply too inexperienced to be consistant at all.

If we sign Grienke to a $20 million contract, we can say goodbye to our payroll and good by to Bourn, McCann and others.

BravesfaninWis

July 22nd, 2012
8:37 pm

Also saw in a report yesterday that the Braves could check in on Omar Infante again. I would love to have him back here. I don’t think its possible, but I really hope the Braves can unload Uggla, I just don’t see any team taking him or his salary on.

It would be cool to see Prado as our everyday 3rd baseman next season and Infante as our everyday 2nd baseman. That would be a nice infield with Prado, Simmons, Infante, and Freeman. Then if we were lucky enough to unload Uggla, we could then sign a power hitting LF, and resign Bourn. I know its a pipe dream, but I would love to see it happen.

Felix

July 22nd, 2012
8:48 pm

Yeah! Get Omar back and unload that no hitting, overpaid Dan Uggla.

Dan Uggla

July 22nd, 2012
8:51 pm

Just because I can’t hit and,
I am a mediocre second baseman and,
I make over 12 million a year and,
I like to date porno girls,
………… is no reason to be upset with me.

jharber

July 22nd, 2012
9:11 pm

does anyone remember my comments about the trade for Uggla in 2011, would have been better off keeping Omar and Dunn.

Larry

July 22nd, 2012
9:14 pm

Move Prado to 2nd, put Constanza in LF, and go with this batting order…

Bourne,
Prado
Jones
Freeman
McCann
Heyward
Simmos when returns and another SS for now
Constanza

Package Uggla & Jurrjens in a deal for a quality pitcher…throw in Hanson if you have to.

BravesfaninWis

July 22nd, 2012
9:23 pm

Larry,

I wouldn’t mind that one bit, and I doubt any “real” Braves would either. The only thing I have a problem with there is that I prefer a power hitting LF over a gap to gap speed guy like Constanza, especially if we were able to resign Bourn.

I love Constanza’s speed, but I would really like a LF who has the chance to hit a HR every at bat. Also, I don’t see any team in this league dumb enough to take on both Uggla and Jurrgens in the same deal. It would be nice, but it will never happen. I would like your scenario though no doubt.

Larry

July 22nd, 2012
9:37 pm

jharber,

This is pathologic and hereditary…starting with Cox and passed on to his offspring FG, they are enamored with free swinging hacks that can occasionally get hot and pound a few monster shots but can never stay that way for 2-3 straight playoff series.

Thus, you get the Booger Picker’s one 1-16 (.059 %) playoff record in the last game (and series) of his 17 opportunities (16 with the Braves, 1 with Toronto)–which is the worst postseason managerial record by any measure in the history all of professional sports–followed by a manager that piloted one of the worst collapses (last September) in the history of professional sports.

With all the many great pitching rotations handed to Cox and now his son, poop for brains, all they needed to do was compliment this with professional contact, situational hitters and we would have multiple World Series trophies show for it. With FG, we are saddled with the absolute emptiest headed manager in professional sports.

But I no longer get as angry with FG…the man is probably doing the best he possibly can so sadly handicapped with a double-digit IQ. I’m unwaveringly convinced he isn’t cognitively capable of processing adequate knowledge to know any better. Sometimes, I look at his bland facial expressions and such emptiness in his eyes in the dugout after a controversial or even an obvious umpiring error, I just SMH and relax with a feeling of empathy as one would for first grader trying to figure out a high school algebra equation.

It’s kind of sad, really, putting a man whose cognitive capacity is maxed out as a 3rd base coach waiving a runner around to score in a position to do such challenging things like fill out a lineup card or calling for a bunt or hit & run…you know, those incredibly difficult decisions “manager” have to make.

Worse, we had a chance to nab the brightest yonug manager in the game when Girardi told the Marlins to stick it…but we held on to Cox, didn’t we, and now look where we are today?

Larry

July 22nd, 2012
9:40 pm

BravesfaninWis,

I’d love a solid left fielder too. But right now our starting pitching is killing us and with only so much budget available I think our best shot for THIS season is at least one more solid pitcher and make tyhe best of Constanza’s speed and versatility.

If we coud get both…golden!

BravesWin

July 22nd, 2012
9:45 pm

A lot of people need to get over the notion that a slumping or injured player is “back in form”, or has “turned the corner” after a rebound game or two. Step back, folks, and look at the bigger picture. Takes time and consistency.for a comeback performance. Uggla was proclaimed to have “turned the corner”, but then the next game…

jharber

July 22nd, 2012
9:49 pm

Larry, mostly agree with you but was cox as the G. M. that fashioned the run in the 90s and early 2000. Cox traded for Smoltz drafted Chipper and many others but a manager he was not. But i have to give him credit where its due.

Jaded

July 22nd, 2012
10:03 pm

I have a ton of respect for Bobby, but he did botch a lot of playoff series. This is the guy who pulled Craig Kimbrel for Mike Dunn with the whole season on the line. People blamed Brooks Conrad for losing that game because it made good copy, but it was more Cox’s fault for making that moronic pitching change (and leaving Conrad in when he had Diory Hernandez on the bench).

But I don’t want to get off on a tangent. The point is, as great as Bobby was at certain things, he also had very questionable judgment in the heat of the moment, and Fredi seems to have inherited that trait.

Timber Wolf.

July 22nd, 2012
10:23 pm

WOW! For someone who won 13 division titles, I guess he should have asked you before he made a decision. Do you really know what you are talking about?

Jaded

July 22nd, 2012
10:33 pm

“WOW! For someone who won 13 division titles, I guess he should have asked you before he made a decision. Do you really know what you are talking about?”

Cox was a fine regular-season manager.

Timber Wolf.

July 22nd, 2012
10:45 pm

If he was such a great manager, why are you cutting him down. I assume with your attitude. You could have done better. If not get off his back. When you have facts then you can run your mouth. uNTIL THEN layoff bobby cox.

Jaded

July 22nd, 2012
10:53 pm

“When you have facts then you can run your mouth”

Six straight postseason series losses.

Losing career postseason record.

1-4 record in World Series.

Lost playoff series in 1992, 1993, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 in which his team had home-field advantage.

Those are all facts. I try not to run my mouth off.

Timber Wolf.

July 22nd, 2012
10:57 pm

If the so called EXPERT who is a jerk can do better why don’t he go call Wren and get the job and lead us to a WS. Why don’t he? Because he would rather run his mouth at a great manager then do something he CAN’T. Get a life Jerk.

Jaded

July 22nd, 2012
11:04 pm

“If the so called EXPERT who is a jerk can do better why don’t he go call Wren and get the job and lead us to a WS. Why don’t he? Because he would rather run his mouth at a great manager then do something he CAN’T. Get a life Jerk.”

No reason to be hostile, man. I’m allowed to have an opinion. My opinion is that Cox was a great manager during the 162-game grind but struggled during the playoffs when every individual tactical decision took on greater importance. There’s a lot of evidence to support me on this, some of which I cited in my last post.

I try to put thought into my posts and not say things flippantly. No, I don’t think I would be a better manager than Bobby Cox. But I can tell you I wouldn’t have pulled Craig Kimbrel for Mike Dunn.

Timber Wolf.

July 22nd, 2012
11:11 pm

That last statement is what makes you a jerk. He won more titles than you will. He made mistakes. We all do that. So if you are going to take one mistake and ride with it. I guess you consider yourself either an Expert or God, You are not You are a JERK.

Jaded

July 22nd, 2012
11:12 pm

Calm down, bro.

Timber Wolf.

July 22nd, 2012
11:14 pm

I will when you quit running your mouth.

Jaded

July 22nd, 2012
11:19 pm

OK. I’ll quit posting uncomfortable facts.

Caseyatthebat

July 22nd, 2012
11:37 pm

Timber Wolf…….Cox won ONE World Series title in 14 post season attempts. Pretty mediocre! And he was just an OK manager during the season considering the pitching he had. His legacy is Fredi Gonzalez who is probably one of the poorer managers I’ve seen.

Chief Knockadouble

July 23rd, 2012
12:29 am

Timber Wolf is either a 9th grader or a middle-aged bag boy at Publix…low IQ, blindly loyal fans are what the Braves radio and TV crews seem to cater to.

BravesFanInNashville

July 23rd, 2012
1:27 am

Infante would be a great pick up. He could be in at SS now for Simmons and can give everyone on the infield or OF a day off when needed. He could play 5 days a week and be valuable. He and Martin would give us great flexibility. We need at least two teams to fall apart who think they are in the WC chase so they become sellers. I think the Red Sox would give up Lester if they were to have a bad 2 weeks and the Brewers are all but out of it too. The Marlins are close to spitting the bit too.

Tim

July 23rd, 2012
8:56 am

Unfortunately, none of the trade scenarios mentioned above will happen because no one wants a pitcher who cannot get outs, i.e. JJ. Also, who wants a 2B who for two years now has shown that he goes into prolonged slumps. Last year was an aberation because the slump can first and then he got hot. This year, he was hot and then the slump came into play.

If FW trades for anyone, it will include Delgado, Teheren, Minor, Gilmartin or Spruill along with Prado or Bethancourt. These are the people in our organization that are coveted by other teams.

Any other scenario is really unrealistic or the GM for the other team has been out of the country for the past two months.

Clay Carroll

July 23rd, 2012
9:03 am

OK, it’s Monday. Are you ready to go 0-12?

bobby

July 23rd, 2012
9:05 am

The Braves won in spite of BC, not because of him. How many arms did he ruin by overworking them? With the starting pitching he had, most of us experts on here could have won with.

Rev Bill

July 23rd, 2012
9:44 am

For quite some time on this blog I have read how cheap Liberty Mutual is amd how dumb Frank Wren is. Payroll order for the National League East, from highest to the lowest is: 1. Phillies, 2.Marlins, 3. Mets, 4. Braves, 5 Nationals. The current standings are the exact reversal of the payroll order. Not sure what that means.

reckingball

July 23rd, 2012
9:56 am

“How many arms did he(Cox) ruin by overworking them?”
None while Leo was the pitching coach.
It’s all Roger’s fault.

reckingball

July 23rd, 2012
9:57 am

The Braves should bring Constanza back up, he would have scored 10 runs all by himself yesterday.

shorty58

July 23rd, 2012
10:07 am

Bobby had his faults but Fredi can’t come close to being the manager that Cox was…Fredi is a clueless idiot as is Wren!

Timber Wolf

July 23rd, 2012
10:09 am

Morning Jerks. Complain Complain That’s all you jerks live for.

DawgDad

July 23rd, 2012
10:52 am

“Uggla will break out. He always does. See his career stats and halves. He’ll get his 30 and hopefully end around .260 or .265. That will be enough.”

Keith: He won’t, he won’t, and it is not. If he were hitting a somewhat consistent .260-.265 with 30-HR power sandwitched between Freeman and McCann in the lineup every day nobody would be on his back. At his salary level, it is not acceptable to perform as expected one or two months out of a season and stink the rest of the year; this is Troy Glaus stuff. I think you’d have trouble finding any other GM who would take Dan and his contract at this point.

DawgDad

July 23rd, 2012
10:53 am

And in fairness, Glaus was hurt.

Timber Wolf

July 23rd, 2012
10:59 am

What kind of dreamworld does reckingball live in? Can anybody answer that.

jim

July 23rd, 2012
11:00 am

If the Braves trade Delgado for Greinke and pay him $100 million for 5 years, I can only imagine what some of the same people calling for that trade will be saying 1 or 2 years from now when Delgado emerges into a top pitcher and Greinke is no more than mediocre with that huge contract hanging like an albatross around the team’s neck.

jim

July 23rd, 2012
11:07 am

Great news that the Saturday game has been moved out of the Fox time slot. I will be able to see it in my market now on MLB Extra Innings

DawgDad

July 23rd, 2012
11:12 am

Which all adds to the Braves needing TWO right-handed bats, one for the middle of the order and one for the bench. Not to mention pitching.

The Braves are an above-average team, but it’s just hard to envision them hanging on. The lineup is badly imbalanced and weak at the bottom, the bench is weak, Chipper’s health is a big risk, the starting pitching is literally a wing and a prayer, and the ready AA-AAA propsects are already here. McCann tends to wear down and fade in the stretch. Is there any other keystone pair in MLB as weak offensively as Uggla-Janish? It’s up to the players to perform, and there are significant issues in that regard, but the GM went into the season with a seriously flawed roster and he’s scrambling madly to hold it together.

reckingball

July 23rd, 2012
11:40 am

I think that Glaus made around $$$1&1/2million in 2010. His legs gave out on him, which was one of the reasons for his mid-season decline.

reckingball

July 23rd, 2012
11:44 am

T.W.@10:59am…….When does middle school start back, in the county where you and your parents live? haha.

reckingball

July 23rd, 2012
11:45 am

I believe that the Braves will win tonight, and break that Monday curse.

Amber Girl

July 23rd, 2012
12:03 pm

Jerk again. I am a 29 yr old woman. Get your facts straight before you run your mouth JERK

Amber Girl

July 23rd, 2012
12:04 pm

Timber Wolf is my other moniker

Skokie Dog

July 23rd, 2012
12:18 pm

Fredi: “Let’s tip our caps to Jonny for his pitching today, and to the Nationals for their hitting early in the game.”

steve whitmire

July 23rd, 2012
2:33 pm

I agree with the other bloggers about McCann being washed up, and, like DawgDad says, I would be happy if I never saw Uggly Uggla bat again as an Atlanta Brave, I know “he’s going to get hot again,” but that barely over .200 average of his is not acceptable for a major league hitter

Preston Thompson

July 23rd, 2012
2:42 pm

I am amazed. So many people that know so much about baseball but only handle it all from a computer. Why don’t they have Frank Wren’s job. Then all things would be better for the Braves.

Larry. I do like your lineup card. But if Prado is given a set position who’s gonna fill in when all the wozzies get hurt? There’s not a better player that can play as many positions, and do it well. To come out of left field in the middle of a game, go to short and play as well he did is amazing.

Braves Legend

July 23rd, 2012
2:42 pm

Braves get Ryan Dempster from Cubs for Randall Delgado….reported by Mark Bowman

Spud

July 23rd, 2012
3:05 pm

Chicago Sun Times says Dempster to Braves!

don

July 23rd, 2012
4:18 pm

This will be a “mini Teixeira” trade. Wren is an idiot. Delgado, on the other hand, has escaped Atlanta.

BATBOY

July 23rd, 2012
4:50 pm

Only CR could write an comment that a pitcher is back and really sharp after pitching only two innings in a 9 to 2 route by the Nats…whew

ijudgenot

July 23rd, 2012
5:08 pm

Wow, Delgado for a two month rental. The Braves will not resign Dempster next year. If Wren had worked out a basic deal with Dempster for next year then fine give up Delgado, but now he gives him up for a two month rental, ridiculous .

Alaska Braves Fan

July 23rd, 2012
5:25 pm

Trade a 22-year-old for a 35-year-old? I understand why Wren would feel the pressure to do that, but this is one decision I disagree with. Of course, as of this moment, I haven’t seen any credible confirmation that such a trade is taking place. Delgado is going to be very good, and that will come very soon. Of course, I’m not an expert; I just pretend to be one on this blog.

ABF

don

July 23rd, 2012
6:17 pm

It is no coincidence that Wren gets a WS share from the Rangers. Maybe some day the Cubs will be in a position to kick in.

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