Tag: Will Venable

Will Venable to Dodgers: Latest Contract Details, Comments and Reaction

The Los Angeles Dodgers announced on Tuesday that they signed outfielder Will Venable to a one-year contract. 

An eight-year veteran, Venable began the year with the Philadelphia Phillies‘ Triple-A minor league affiliate before opting out of his contract last Friday.   

The Dodgers optioned utility infielder and backup catcher Austin Barnes to Triple-A Oklahoma City to make room for Venable on the active roster. 

Venable has spent most of his career in California, playing his first seven-plus years in the majors with the San Diego Padres

The 33-year-old was originally seen as a player capable of racking up 20 home runs and 20 stolen bases per year. But he never lived up to those expectations, only hitting the 20-home run plateau once in 2013. 

After 98 games in 2015 and with free agency looming, though, Venable was dealt to the Texas Rangers for minor leaguers. In 37 games in the American League, he recorded just 12 hits for a .182 batting average with no home runs and three RBI. 

The Dodgers were in need of some added depth in the outfield with Yasiel Puig on the disabled list because of a hamstring injury and with the release of veteran Carl Crawford on Monday, per Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times.

In 30 games this season, Crawford batted .186 with just one stolen base. That’s hardly the kind of output the organization expects from a player it still owes $35 million through 2017, according to ESPN.com’s Doug Padilla

Crawford’s departure also meant the Dodgers had one left-handed bat in the outfield in Joc Pederson and none coming off the bench, where Venable is expected to make his biggest impact in Los Angeles. 

That’s because even with Puig out, Los Angeles could turn to the likes of Trayce Thompson and Scott Van Slyke to see time in the outfield alongside Pederson and Enrique Hernandez. Because of Venable’s left-handed bat, though, L.A. could use him as a pinch-hitting option late in games against right-handed relievers. 


Stats courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com.

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Will Venable to Phillies: Latest Contract Details, Comments and Reaction

Will Venable didn’t have to wait long to find a new team. One day after the Cleveland Indians announced they released the 33-year-old outfielder, he reportedly agreed to a minor league deal with the Philadelphia Phillies on Monday, per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki and CSNPhilly.com’s Jim Salisbury.  

The Phillies confirmed the deal on Twitter.

In 135 games with the San Diego Padres and Texas Rangers in 2015, Venable hit .244 with six home runs, 33 runs batted in and 16 stolen bases.

The Philadelphia Inquirer‘s Matt Gelb posited Venable could be a good platoon option in right field with right-handed bat Tyler Goeddel. Historically, Venable is a much better hitter against right-handed pitching than he is against lefties, per Baseball-Reference.com:

Despite his struggles over the past two seasons, Venable can still be a valuable member of an MLB outfield, especially if he’s splitting time and not playing every day.

He ranked 25th in FanGraphs’ baserunning metric among hitters with at least 350 plate appearances in 2015. Not only is Venable a threat to steal, he can also advance an extra base on base hits on occasion. In addition, he will help Philadelphia defensively, especially given his ability to play all three outfield positions.

The Phillies almost certainly aren’t going to be a playoff contender in 2016. PECOTA projects them to win an MLB-worst 66 games, per Baseball Prospectus. Adding Venable won’t make them contenders overnight, but he’ll add depth to the outfield and provide security in the event Goeddel struggles in the majors.

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MLB Trade Rumors: Buzz Around Jeff Samardzija, Gerardo Parra and More

As we rapidly approach the All-Star Break, most teams in baseball have a pretty good idea of where they stand compared to the rest of the league.

While no team has technically been eliminated or clinched a playoff spot just yet, there is only so much a season can turn around in the second half, so teams are either looking to the now or to the future with the trade deadline on the horizon.

Although the deadline is still a decent way off, that doesn’t mean the rumor mill isn’t able to fire up now and again and provide us with some tasty little nuggets to consider before July 31 rolls around.


A number of teams interested in Jeff Samardzija

For teams looking for starting pitching at the trade deadline, a top option isn’t going to come cheap and although Cole Hamels and Johnny Cueto are both on underachieving teams and being shopped, it is White Sox pitcher Jeff Samardzija who could garner the most interest.

Samardzija joined Chicago in the offseason from the Oakland Athletics, and while he hasn’t quite lived up to expectations, he is a strong addition to any rotation and could change a team’s fortunes once the postseason rolls around.

There are a number of teams interested in bringing Samardzija on board, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, and he could have a serious impact on the rest of the season if the White Sox do decide to deal him away:

There’s always so much debate on where he fits on a pitching staff. He’s not a No. 1 and he’s not having the best of seasons, yet he’s one of the more discussed and desirable pitchers on the trade market.

Kansas City, Houston, Detroit, and others are in on him.

Scouts are constantly at this games so he may be the first starting pitcher to move ahead of the deadline.

The numbers this year aren’t great, with a 4.33 ERA and a 5-4 record, but Samardzija showed what he was capable of in 2014 with a combined 2.99 ERA with the Cubs and the Athletics.

For the White Sox, who find themselves 9.5 games behind the Royals and look to be already out of the playoff race, offloading Samardzija for some young talent to jump start a rebuild would make sense and looks likely.


Will Venable and Gerardo Parra on the Cubs radar

Although starting pitching is the focus at the trade deadline, and has been a relative strength for the Cubs through the first half of the season, the same cannot be said of their bats.

Ranking 24th in runs scored, the Cubs need offensive help in the worst way possible as they attempt to stay in the race for the playoffs, and Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports reports that Gerardo Parra and Will Venable are two players Chicago is interested in:

Two names to watch: Milwaukee’s Gerardo Parra, a two-time Gold Glove winner, and San Diego’s Will Venable, who played for Hoyer during his tenure as general manager of the Padres. Both Parra and Venable are considered excellent clubhouse citizens — a theme of recent Cubs’ acquisitions.

Parra has been linked with a number of teams this season, with ESPN’s Buster Olney reporting the San Francisco Giants are also interested. Although his power numbers aren’t great, the .311 batting average and 26 RBI would be a big boost for the Cubs offensively.

Venable’s numbers haven’t impressed as much as Parra’s this year—the veteran center fielder is only averaging .257 with six home runs and 22 RBI—but his connection to Hoyer could lead to a possible move before the deadline.


New York Yankees not in on top pitchers

This season hasn’t gone exactly how the Yankees wanted for star pitcher CC Sabathia.

With some of his skills already starting to slip in recent seasons, the former Cy Young Award winner has been ghastly through the first half of the season, recording a 5.59 ERA and a 3-8 record.

It remains to be seen what the Yankees do with Sabathia—if they decide to stick with him or drop him to the bullpen—but starting pitching is a definite need for the AL East club when the deadline rolls around.

According to Andrew Marchand of ESPNthough, the Yankees won’t be in the market for the top names like Hamels and Cueto and will look a little deeper into the talent pool:

The Yankees seem unlikely to add a top starter. Unless prices drop significantly, an ace like Cole Hamels or Johnny Cueto is probably too expensive. If the Yankees have an injury or want to replace CC Sabathia in the rotation, Adam Warren or Severino could be called upon.

Even with the struggles of Sabathia, the Yankees find themselves on top of the division and in prime position to make it back to the playoffs, thanks in large part to the resurgence of Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez.

But with the Orioles, Rays and Blue Jays all hot on their tails, adding another quality starting pitcher could give New York the boost it needs to survive one of baseball’s toughest divisions.

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Fantasy Baseball Sleepers 2012: Will Venable and 4 Versatile Value Picks

Fantasy baseball owners hoping to sneak underrated players with quality power and speed need look no further than Will Venable.

The San Diego Padres right fielder will likely be overlooked, as is the case for three other similar players on this list.

Your opponents’ misses are your gain.

These late-round steals offer fantastic versatility. They’ll produce home runs and provide plenty of points through stolen bases.

Patient, risk-taking owners will profit from Venable and more, while friends mistake bigger names as better talent.

Here are the four guys who will be available and will round out your squad nicely.


Will Venable

Venable will be disregarded merely because of the team he plays for—the Padres are awful.

Awful teams must be filled with awful players, right?


Venable hits a consistent .250, nothing overwhelming, but he’ll still give you around 15 home runs and 50 RBI.

Better yet, he’ll net you 30 stolen bases.

Decent numbers for a mid-round guy. Great numbers for a player who will fall to the later rounds.


Jordan Schafer

In just 82 games last season, Schafer hit two home runs and stole 22 bases.

At just 25 years old, Schafer has found a home as the starting center fielder with the Houston Astros.

Now that he finally has the opportunity to play a full season with one team, he will benefit and so should fantasy owners.

He has the speed to steal 30 bases and enough pop to hit around a dozen home runs.

Schafer, like Venable, plays for a bad team—the Houston Astros—so he’ll likely be forgotten by many when they’re putting together their draft boards.

If you’re daring enough to acquire Schafer, you won’t be sorry.


Tyler Pastornicky

The 22-year-old shortstop finds himself starting for the Atlanta Braves.

When considering players from the NL East, most fantasy owners will look at the big names on the Philadelphia Phillies and the Miami Marlins.

Even those who look at the Braves will likely pass over Pastornicky for Brian McCann, Jason Heyward and even Martin Prado, yet Pastornicky has the stuff to garner Rookie of the Year consideration.

In the minors, he averaged about six home runs and 35 stolen bases. The minor leagues haven’t provided him an opportunity to play in more than 125 games though.

His power and speed should continue to develop, and given 30 more games a season, Pastornicky can produce eight to 10 home runs and 40 stolen bases.


Dexter Fowler

In his fifth year, Fowler will benefit from consistency as the everyday center fielder.

Like Pastornicky, Fowler will be passed up by owners reviewing the Colorado Rockies lineup for bigger names such as Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez.

Fowler averages about five home runs each season, but hitting at Coors Field, there’s always hope he can produce more.

If he can stay healthy and start in 30 more games than he normally does, his numbers can easily rise.

Though he stole a low number of bases the last two seasons, he has the speed to steal over 25, as shown in 2009.

He’s only 26 years old, so he has youth on his side. Consistency and development will make him worth a look in 2012.

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San Diego Padres: Cold Bats Key to Slow Start

There’s no way around it or no easier way to put it.  A lack of offense has resulted in a lack of wins for the San Diego Padres.

It was a welcoming site when Will Venable singled up the middle to put a run on the board in the Padres’ 3-1 loss against the Philadelphia Phillies and Roy Halladay Sunday.  Halladay fanned 14, coming within one out of their third shutout of the Padres during a four-game sweep at PETCO Park.

The Padres have scored just three runs in their last 32 innings and besides scoring five runs in the second game of a doubleheader against the Chicago Cubs Wednesday, the Padres have scored just four runs in their past six games.

It should come as no surprise, then, that the Padres (8-14) are last in the MLB in runs scored (62) and batting average (.214).

To put those numbers into perspective, the Cincinnati Reds have scored 114 runs and the St. Louis Cardinals lead MLB with a .295 team BA.

What is most frustrating about the inept offensive numbers is the production the club is getting out of the pitching staff—without a fully equipped Mat Latos.

In the midst of losing six of their last seven games, the Friars’ staff hasn’t allowed more than four runs in a single game.  On the season, their starting pitching ranks second with 15 quality starts and also have an MLB’s second-best team ERA (2.94).

A prime example of the Padres inefficiency at the plate is the curious case of Dustin Moseley and his 0-3 start.

Moseley has turned in four quality starts, an ERA (1.40) good enough for third best in MLB, but has a 0-3 record to show because the Padres have given him just one run in support.

Aaron Harang (1.87 ERA) has been just as good in his return to his hometown, with a win in each of his starts.  The only difference is the Padres have provided Harang with 19 runs.

The only every day starter batting above .300 is Nick Hundley (.309). As a result, Bud Black has been changing the batting order on his lineup card daily.

The most recent move was the flip-flop of Will Venable (.172) with Cameron Maybin (.260) at the top of the order.  

Besides Maybin and Hundley, no other Padre starter is batting above .250: Jason Bartlett (.242), Orlando Hudson (.229), Chase Headley (.227), Ryan Ludwick (.194). 

Jorge Cantu and Brad Hawpe, who platoon at first base, are batting .145 and 1.04, respectively. 

“We’ve got to keep working, and we’ve got to grind through this,” Padres manager Bud Black told MLB.com.   “We’ve got to keep doing our work in the cage and watching video. We have to keep working our [rear ends] off to get to where we need to be.”

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San Diego Padres 2011: Five Friars Key to Success in San Diego

The Padres were in the National League West driver’s seat for most of the 2010 campaign.  As we all very well know, a 10-game lull in August and September paved the way for the San Francisco Giants’ run to the World Series title.

The Padres have a new look in 2011.  Their projected Opening Day lineup will feature six new faces, and Mat Latos will take the ball in an effort to solidify himself as a staff ace in his second full season.

It will take a full team effort for there to be postseason baseball in San Diego.  Let’s take a look at five players whose productivity will pay dividends in 2011.

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Chicago Cubs: Bullpen Blows Save for a 5-3 Loss To San Diego Padres

The San Diego Padres are simply too strong for the Cubs.

The Chicago Cubs could not avoid the sweep by the NL West leaders Thursday afternoon.  Once again, their bullpen sank and a careless defensive play in the seventh inning put them down 5-3 in the series finale.

Carlos Zambrano, the Cubs’ starter, did not have a stellar performance.  However, he managed to limit the Padres to one run and four hits in six innings.  Even though he walked far too many battersgiving six Padres free passes to first basehe got out of his jams, stranding runners one inning after another.

Well…except in the second, when the Padres took a 1-0 lead. 

He issued back-to-back walks to Yorvit Torrealba and Will Venable.  Chris Denorfia followed and loaded the bases with a single to shortstop.  One out later, Jerry Hairston, Jr. hit into a fielder’s choice that scored Torrealba from third.

The Cubs scored two runs off Mat Latos in the sixth for a 2-1 lead, the first time they had a lead in this series.  Lead-off man Kosuke Fukudome singled and scored on Marlon Byrd’s line-drive double to left field.  Aramis Ramirez also doubled to left field to drive in Byrd. 

The lead did not last long.  The following inning hurt the Cubs.  The Padres scored four runs with help from the careless Cubs’ defense.

Left-handed reliever Sean Marshall was brought in to try to protect the Cubs’ one-run lead.  But he walked lead-off batter Miguel Tejada and gave up a single to Adrian Gonzalez.  Ryan Ludwick tied the game with an RBI single that brought Tejada home. 

Chase Headley followed with another single to load the bases.  One out later, Venable hit a single to score Gonzalez and Ludwick.

Then with Headley on third and Venable on second, Chris Denorfia hit a ground ball to third baseman Aramis Ramirez.  Headley tried to head home, but he was tagged out on a 5-2-5 rundown.  Having already reached third on the play, Venable caught the Cubs off guard.  Seeing no Cub covering home plate, he hustled home and scored before the late relay arrived.

Marshall (6-4), who had not given up a run in the month of August, blew the save and took the loss.

On the other hand, Padres starter Latos (13-5) tossed seven innings, giving up two runs with 10 strikeouts and one walk for the Padres, who improve their season record to a National League-best 73-47.  They sit six games over the second-place San Francisco Giants in the NL West.

The Cubs got a consolation run in the bottom of ninth.  Alfonso Soriano scored on Blake DeWitt’s two-out single.  But Heath Bell struck out Koyie Hill, the potential game-tying run, to end the game for his 37th save of the year.

NOTE: The Cubs recalled outfielder Sam Fuld from Triple-A Iowa Thursday.  He pinch-hit in the sixth inning.

The article is also featured on www.sportshaze.com.

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Fantasy Baseball Free Agent Pool: 2010 Speed Demons, Vol. 8



Just because you’ve slipped behind in the Stolen Base category doesn’t mean you can’t catch up.  Here are some reasonably available SB threats.


Coco Crisp, OF, Oakland A’s

If steals are what you’re looking for Coco is your guy.

He had seven SBs over the past 15 days while hitting .250 with seven runs and one RBI. On the year he’s hitting .237 (which explains his 11 percent ESPN and 24 percent CBS ownership) with 14 SBs, 24 runs, three HRs, and 18 RBIs in 34 games.


Will Venable, OF, San Diego Padres

Venable had four SBs over the past 15 days while hitting .179 with five runs, one HR, and six RBIs. On the year he’s hitting .231 with 18 SBs, 40 runs, nine HRs, and 38 RBIs. Will is owned in four percent of ESPN and 13 percent of CBS leagues.


Jason Kendall, C, Kansas City Royals

Kendall had three SBs over the past 15 days while hitting .213 with seven runs. On the year he’s hitting .263 with nine SBs, 35 runs, and 33 RBIs. Jason is owned in eight percent of ESPN and 42 percent of CBS leagues.



Daric Barton, 1B, Oakland A’s

Barton had three SBs over the past 15 days while hitting .255 with six runs and six RBIs. On the year he’s hitting .271 with four SBs, 46 runs, five HRs, and 38 RBIs. Daric is owned in three percent of ESPN and 25 percent of CBS leagues.


Chris Getz, 2B, Kansas City Royals

Getz had three SBs over the past 15 days while hitting .265 with four runs and one RBI. On the year he’s hitting .240 with 11 SBs, 18 runs, and 13 RBIs. Chris is owned in 0.3 percent of ESPN and eight percent of CBS leagues.


Also check out:
– Fantasy Baseball Box Score Breakouts 8/3/10
Fantasy Baseball Streaming Pitcher Option for 8/4/10

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