Cliff Lee is the fourth pitcher since 1995 to throw 90 strikes in a playoff game

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It’s been, like, an hour since I posted an amazing Cliff Lee stat, so …
Lee threw 90 of his 120 pitches for strikes in last night’s complete-game win over the Rays, becoming the first pitcher since Orlando Hernandez in 2000 to throw 90 or more strikes in a playoff game.
El Duque threw 91 strikes in Game 3 of the World Series that year, taking a loss against the Mets while throwing 134 total pitches. Since the playoffs expanded in 1995 the only other pitchers to throw 90 or more strikes in a postseason game are David Wells in 1998 and Randy Johnson in 1997.
Also of note: Between the regular season and playoffs there have been three instances of someone throwing 90 or more strikes in a game this year. Cliff Lee has two of them and Brandon Morrow has the other.

Jonny Venters is still pitching

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Lefty reliever Jonny Venters was among a handful of players the Rays signed to minor league contracts, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.

Venters, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2012 and has logged just 27 2/3 innings in the minors in the meantime due to a continuous battle with his elbow. According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Venters has undergone four — four! — Tommy John surgeries.

When he was healthy, Venters was a fearsome late-game option for the Braves. He posted a 1.95 ERA with 93 strikeouts in 83 innings in 2010, and a 1.84 ERA with 96 strikeouts in 88 innings in 2011. His first-half performance in 2011 earned him a spot on the National League All-Star roster.

Venters has spent the last two years in the Rays’ system and he’ll try to make it a third.