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04/03/2008 11:57 PM ET
Barons' Harrell makes stellar return
Combines on a one-hitter in first start since 2006
Lucas Harrell was selected by the White Sox in the fourth round of the 2004 Draft. (Winston-Salem Warthogs)


Lucas Harrell made a spectacular return to the mound Thursday, combining with three relievers on a one-hitter as the Birmingham Barons opened the season with a 3-0 blanking of the Tennessee Smokies at Regions Park.

Harrell (1-0) did not miss a beat after missing all of last season following shoulder surgery. He retired the first eight batters before Joe Simokaitis reached on an error by second baseman Robert Hudson. Former first-round draft pick Tyler Colvin laced a one-out single in the fourth to end the no-hit bid.

A 22-year-old right-hander, Harrell walked one and struck out four over five innings. In 2006, he combined to go 7-4 with a 3.20 ERA in 20 starts for Class A Advanced Winston-Salem and Birmingham.

Joseph Torres struck out two in 1 2/3 innings, Carlos Torres fanned three of the four batters he retired and Jon Link tossed a perfect ninth for his first save.

David Cook delivered RBI singles in the third and fifth innings, while Miguel Negron went 2-for-4 with a run-scoring single in the eighth for the Barons. Hudson also had two hits and scored twice.

Tennessee starter Justin Berg (0-1) allowed two runs -- one earned -- on six hits and a walk with two strikeouts over 4 1/3 frames.

Steve Conley is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.