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Giants shortstop Crawford did something Ripken, Jeter somehow never did

The hit that broke open the National League Wild Card Game on Wednesday night revealed an almost unbelievable baseball postseason statistic.

Brandon Crawford's fourth-inning grand slam for the San Francisco Giants was the first four-run homer hit by a shorstop in the postseason. Ever.

Crawford -- the 24-year-old infielder who has hit 26 home runs in 511 regular season games -- has more postseason grand slams than one guy who most Orioles fans love (Cal Ripken Jr.) and another they begrudgingly grew to respect over a frustrating 20 years (Derek Jeter).

But don't worry, fans. The Iron Man did just fine in his limited postseason career.

In 124 plate appearances in October, Ripken batted .336, had a .411 on-base percentage and .455 slugging percentage.

Somewhat surprisingly for a guy who hit more than 400 home runs in his career, he had just one postseason round-tripper. It came against the Cleveland Indians in Game 2 of the American League Championship Series in 1997.

The Captain -- who played on significantly better teams in New York than Ripken did in Baltimore -- filled up the stat sheet. In 734 plate appearances, Jeter blasted 20 homers and batted .308/.374/.365.

Ripken is already in the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Jeter will join him in five years.

Yet neither of them -- or anyone else, for that matter -- ever did what Crawford did for the Giants on Wednesday.

apyles@baltsun.com

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