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Phil Hughes has his walkless streak snapped after 106 batters

Jun 22, 2014, 7:50 PM EDT

Phil Hughes Phil Hughes

Without much fanfare, Phil Hughes has put together a great season in his first season with the Twins after leaving the Yankees. Hughes allowed five runs in five innings to the White Sox on Sunday afternoon, really only his second poor start out of his last 12 outings.

Hughes entered the start without having issued a walk since the fourth inning of his June 1 start against the Yankees. The walkless streak was snapped in the third inning, when he issued a free pass to White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers. As Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press notes, the streak spanned 106 batters. What’s incredible is that it isn’t even Hughes’ longest walkless streak this season. Between the second inning of his April 20 start against the Royals and that June 1 start, Hughes went through 178 batters between walks.

On the season, Hughes is 8-3 with a 3.40 ERA, a 1.13 WHIP, and an 82/9 K/BB ratio in 95 1/3 innings. His 2.3 percent walk rate is the lowest among 95 qualified starting pitchers in the major leagues, according to FanGraphs. The Twins signed him to a three-year, $24 million contract back in December. They have certainly gotten what they wanted from him so far.

  1. serbingood - Jun 22, 2014 at 9:14 PM

    Last year, management allowing, he could have issued 106 walks in one inning.

    Looks like leaving NY was the best thing to happen to him since birth. You are a quality starter after all.

  2. baseballisboring - Jun 23, 2014 at 12:13 AM

    That’s a starting pitcher with a 9 to 1 K/BB ratio. Wow.

  3. pisano - Jun 23, 2014 at 12:13 AM

    The Yankees were more than patient with homer Hughes, he just could not pitch in NY. I don’t know of any team that would have given him 14mil to stay with the way he pitched the past few years. In reality, I think the Twins took a chance in signing him for I believe three years for 21mil, and so far so good.

  4. papacrick - Jun 23, 2014 at 12:20 AM

    Joba and Hughes both look great now that they ditched the Pinstripes. I thought both were cooked and neither looked likely to have a change of scenery rebound. Must be sumthin to the bright lights of NY. Some guys thrive in that setting and others crumble

    • dluxxx - Jun 23, 2014 at 9:41 AM

      Or… It could be that playing in a band box for half of your starts is going to affect your stats. That and pitching philosophy. He’s changed the way he pitches here, part of which is ditching his changeup and relying on his curveball as his change of pace pitch.

  5. sailbum7 - Jun 23, 2014 at 10:39 AM

    With the focus of the article being on this streak, it would have been nice if the author had included what the record is. Is this really a big deal or is the record far more impressive?

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