Walk-off balk wins Northwest League title for Cubs' Class A affiliate

The Eugene Emeralds (Cubs Low-A affiliate) probably didn't belong in the Northwest League playoffs, but they are now the champions and it happened in a pretty fitting way. 

The Emeralds finished the season with a 31-45 record, good for last place in the South division. They were 17-21 in the second half, though, and that was good for the second-best record in the South in that span and it was good enough to make the playoffs under the league's format. 

The Emeralds got hot at the right time and swept a three-game series, 2-0, against the Hillsboro Hilltoppers (who were 51-25 in the regular season). They then won the first two games of a five-game series against the Spokane Indians (Rangers) leading up to Tuesday night's possible clincher. 

As noted, the Emeralds won, and here it is: 

Yes, a walk-off balk championship. 

The Emeralds were 31-45 in the regular season, but 5-0 in the playoffs and won the Northwest League on a balk. Quite the story. 

CBS Sports Writer

Matt Snyder has been a baseball writer with CBS Sports since 2011. A member of the BBWAA, he's now covered every World Series since 2010. The former Indiana University baseball player now lives on the... Full Bio

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