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IN BRIEF : Braves Release Runge, Draftee

<i> From Times wire services </i>

The Atlanta Braves today released utility infielder Paul Runge and draftee Matt Stark and sent six other players to the minor leagues, lowering their roster to 28. Runge, a three-year veteran, batted .211 in 52 games with the Braves last season. Stark, a catcher, was drafted from the Toronto Blue Jays’ organization during the winter baseball meetings for $50,000.

In Mesa, Ariz., the Chicago Cubs announced that they have cut four players, including right-handed pitcher Mike Harkey, who expected to be in the starting rotation this season.

Harkey, who has been bothered by tendinitis in his pitching shoulder, was optioned to AAA Iowa along with pitchers Les Lancaster and Dean Wilkins and outfielder Doug Dascenzo.

Harkey, 22, came up to the Cubs last September and had an 0-3 record but an excellent 2.60 earned run average. This spring he had a 1-4 record with an 8.84 ERA.

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