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Kaduk! writes for Big League Stew, a baseball blog for Yahoo! Sports. On Friday, Kaduk! pointed out that White Sox leadoff hitter Alejandro De Aza had "a shot at a rare achievement"—he'd been to the plate 555 times this season, and had yet to ground into a double play. Kaduk! said that if De Aza could go the rest of the season without grounding into a double play, he'd be just the fifth batting-title-qualified player since 1942 to do it. "It's a nice blend of achievement and luck for anyone to go through an entire season without grounding into a double play and we'll see if De Aza gets there," Kaduk! wrote.
I wondered how many no hitters Kaduk! had spoiled by blabbing about them in the seventh inning. The four other players who'd avoided GIDP for a full year—Craig Biggio in 1997, Rob Deer in 1990, Dick McAuliffe in 1968, and Pete Reiser in 1942—didn't have to worry about some Yahoo! blogging about it prematurely.
A little Internet snooping reveals an unsurprising additional fact: Kaduk! is a big Cubs fan. He's the author of a 2006 book, Wrigleyworld: A Season in Baseball's Best Neighborhood.
After Kaduk! disclosed De Aza's streak, you knew what was going to happen. The only question was whether it would happen at a key moment.
The Sox began yesterday one game up on the Detroit Tigers in the race for the AL Central title. In the late innings of a matinee on the south side, things looked dark: the Sox trailed the Cleveland Indians 4-2. But the sun peeked through when Gordon Beckham reached on an error to lead off the eighth. The tying run strode to the plate. Alejandro De Aza.
Grounder to second: second to short to first.
Talk about a twin killing! Just like that, both the streak and the rally were history. Five hundred and fifty-five plate appearances without grounding into a single DP—and only 16 plate appearances after Kaduk! flapped his loose lips about it, De Aza's "shot at a rare achievement" had ended.
Kevin Youkilis followed with a single (of course), bringing the tying run up, again, this time in the large person of Adam Dunn. On Monday night, Dunn had blasted a three-run homer in the eighth to lead the Sox to a come-from-behind win. Could he be an eighth-inning hero two straight days? Or would he grab some bench for the third time in the game and the 210th this season?
Not the former. And with Detroit's 2-0 win over KC last night, the Sox and Tigers are now dead-even, with eight games left. Thanks a lot, Kaduk!.