Braves reliever Jonny Venters hasn’t pitched in one week because of a sore elbow, manager Fredi Gonzalez revealed after Saturday’s 3-2 loss to Houston.
Gonzalez was asked about the veteran left-hander late Saturday,a fter rookie lefty Luis Avilan made his third appearance since Venters last pitched in a game.
“He’s fine,” Gonzalez said of Venters, who returned July 21 from a 16-day stint on the disabled list for elbow inflammation. “We’ve kind of laid off him the last three or four days. He threw a bullpen today, and unless something comes up crazy he should be good tomorrow….
“Just tender with his elbow a little bit. Nothing major. So we just took a step back.”
It’s been a difficult season for Venters, who has a 3.96 ERA and .199 opponents’ average in 44 games. Last season he led the majors with 85 appearances and ranked fifth among National League relievers with a 1.84 ERA and seventh with a .176 opponents’ average.
Chipper passes Sheff
When Chipper Jones doubled to drive in two runs in Friday’s 4-1 win against the Astros, the Braves third baseman moved past former teammate Gary Sheffield into sole possession of 65th place on the all-time major league hits list with 2,690. That left Jones 34 hits behind Robert Alomar, who is fifth all-time among switch-hitters with 2,724 hits.
Jones, who is retiring after the season, had a .363 average in 22 games from July 3-Aug. 3 (Friday), with nine doubles, four home runs, 18 RBIs and a 1.047 on-base-plus-slugging percentage in that period.
In 52 games since May 1, Jones had a .333 average with 23 extra-base hits, 35 RBIs and a .938 OPS.
Hudson joins Braves 100-win club
Tim Hudson’s win Friday was his 100th as a Brave, making him the 17th pitcher in franchise history to reach that standard and the fifth to do it in the Atlanta era. He’s in heady company in the latter group, joining Hall of Famer Phil Niekro, Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and John Smoltz.
Hudson has a 100-62 record and 3.50 ERA in 212 starts for the Braves, and 192-101 career record in 14 seasons with Oakland and Atlanta.