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Through four

So remember how people were talking about how Simontacchi is around the strike zone. He just completed a 50-pitch outing over four innings. He threw 41 strikes. Wow.

Problem: He gave up three runs in his four innings. Eric Bruntlett hit a two-out, RBI double in the second. And then Jason Lane touched him for a two-run homer in the fourth. That shot, though, was a bit wind-blown. It carried out to right as Kearns drifted back. The wind really whips across the flats here.

Still, after four, the Nationals lead 4-3. They got those three in the first, and then Cristian Guzman hit a two-out RBI double in the second that scored Josh Wilson (who's 2 for 2).

Jason Bergmann, another candidate for the rotation, now on in relief of Simontacchi.

By Barry Svrluga  |  March 8, 2007; 2:06 PM ET
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