Bizarre Balk-Off Propels Dodgers to Victory

Arguably the best part of being a sports fan is the inevitable magic that occurs when world-class athletes rise to the occasion to claim victory for themselves or their team. Those magic moments provide the basis for legends that transcend the games in which they took place and echo throughout the annals of sport.

Michael Jordan’s dagger against the Cleveland Cavaliers in 1989 NBA Playoffs–a play forever remembered as “The Shot”–is one such moment. So too is Kerri Strug’s courageous vault in the face of injury to help the U.S. Women’s Gymnastics team secure gold at the 1996 Summer Olympics.

Another moment destined for ceaseless recountings by multiple generations of fans has joined the ranks of these epic tales.

Most would agree that the thrill of a walk-off home run to win a baseball game is one of the most exciting plays in sports. But what about the balk-off?

In what was one of the most bizarre happenings in recent memory, Texas Rangers pitcher Keone Kela’s balk on a 1-2 pitch to Jimmy Rollins in the bottom of the ninth inning allowed Enrique Hernandez to stroll freely to the plate and secure a 1-0 victory for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Even Kela’s own manager couldn’t help but shake his at what transpired. Without question, his balk-off will live on forever in the minds of baseball fans everywhere.

Infamy is still a kind of fame, right?

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