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Don't let this post get in the way of the previous one

That one's much more interesting, and I want you guys to continue the debate below. But I have a fascinating thing for you.

So Joel Hanrahan threw five innings of two-hit ball for Class AAA Columbus last night, and he's a candidate to join the rotation at some point. But the most amazing thing to happen in that 2-1 victory for Columbus over Durham: Winston Abreu. The reliever came on to replace Hanrahan in the sixth. He faced nine batters. He struck out eight. He threw 41 pitches. Thirty-two of them were for strikes.

"He dominated," GM Jim Bowden said. Abreu, who pitched for Baltimore last season, is a candidate to add depth in the future, Bowden said.

But the real interesting thing: Ran into Jayson Stark from espn.com here, the incomparable reporter/writer/stats guru who's never met a number he couldn't crunch. He did some digging, as he's wont to do. He found that in the majors, over the last 50 years, only one (1) guy had made an appearance of three innings, faced only nine batters and struck out eight of them -- Ron Davis of the Yankees on May 4, 1981, when he struck out eight California Angels.

There are other relievers who have struck out eight in three innings, but with a bunch of junk thrown in. With that in mind, Jayson passes this along: Bruce Chen, then of the Orioles, did just that, but he mixed in five hits, three walks and four runs.

Top four: Nationals 1, Phillies 1, Bergmann looking quite good, and was robbed (I think) by an umpire's call at first. Will probably be dealt with in the $.35 edition.

That's it for this absurd aside. Please go to the post below for what's turning into a fascinating discussion.

(Oh, and to those wondering about Church's benching but Fick staying in the game, I asked Acta that on Sunday, and he had a good explanation, which I'll relay to you later tonight or tomorrow.)

By Barry Svrluga  |  April 24, 2007; 7:52 PM ET
 
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