May 26, 1993 – Martinez Home Run off Canseco’s Head
The 1990s were the prime years of blooper videos. Prior to viral videos and instant analysis I can remember waiting for the Sportscenter “Not Top 10” to see that week’s gaffes and miscues. One clip that will always make an all-time compilation of baseball bloopers is Carlos Martinez hit a long fly ball to the warning track in Municipal Stadium.
Rangers right fielder Jose Canseco raced onto the track and threw up a glove. He evidently mis-judged the ball, because it hit him square on the top of the head and bounced over the outfield wall. Martinez circled the bases, and the Indians later went on to win 7-6.
Honorable Mention: May 21, 2014 – Walk-Off Balk in the 13th Inning
In this 5 hour see-saw battle of a game, the Tribe and Tigers exchanged blows for 13 innings.
David Murphy tied the game with a two-run home run in the bottom of the 9th off Tigers closer Joe Nathan.
In the top of the 13th, the Tigers took the lead when Alex Avila launched a home run on the first pitch he saw from Josh Tomlin–the ninth Indians pitcher to work that day. In the bottom of the thirteenth, Michael Brantley tied the game with an RBI single to left field. David Murphy grounded out, and Al Albuquerque was brought in from the Tiger’s bullpen. Albuquerqe intentionally walked Yan Gomes to load the bases and pitch to Ryan Rayburn.
On the way to the 1-0 pitch, Albuquerque started his throwing motion and stopped to reset. Home plate umpire Craig Gibson immediately called the balk, and awarded first base to Rayburn, forcing in Asdrubal Cabrera to end the game in a most unlikely fashion.
One thought on “Game 47”
Tough choice. Winning on a balk would be cheap if it happened to any other team but since it was the Indians, it was a great way to walk off. I’ll go with Canseco’s head shot though, if only because I was at that game and it was Canseco. Because I was in the upper deck behind the plate at the vast Muni Stadium, I couldn’t tell that it was his head that earned him an assist for the score but word filtered to us that that was the case. It’s always fun to have been at a memorable game.