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Impressive control streak comes to an end

The Sports Xchange

During his post-game comments on April 22, Padres manager Bud Black said there were two areas the Padres needed to address -- walks and errors.

Over the next six games, the Padres made nine more errors to run their season total to an ugly 27 -- putting them on pace for a 190-error season.

But the walks went away in near record fashion.

From the time that Edinson Volquez issued a walk to the Nationals Wilson Ramos in the fifth inning Thursday to when Clayton Richard walked Buster Posey in the sixth Sunday, Padres pitchers went 26 innings and 104 hitters without issuing a walk.

Before the streak began, Padres pitchers were walking rival hitters at a rate of 4.42 walks per nine innings. "That's not acceptable," said Padres manager Bud Black.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the streak of 26 straight innings without a walk issued was the longest such streak for the Padres since the 2007 staff went 29 innings without issuing a walk.

The 104-straight batters faced without issuing a walk was the fourth-longest such streak in Padres history and longest such streak since 1995 when the club went 111-straight batters faced without allowing a walk.

How critical are walks? Well, Richards walked Posey on four straight balls after jumping ahead 0-and-2 in the count. Posey scored the lead run in a two-run inning that turned a 2-1 Giants lead into a 4-1 victory.

"There were two at-bats you look back on that really hurt us," said Richard. "One to (Pablo Sandoval, for a first-inning homer) and Posey's, the walk really hurt us."

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