Our beloved Kung Fu Panda is still in the game!

Former SF Giants fan favorite hits world's first six-run home run
Former SF Giants star third baseman Pablo Sandoval made history in Dubai's Baseball United league with a six-run home run.
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Pablo Sandoval has hit some legendary home runs in his career. He blasted three dingers in the SF Giants' Game 1 win over Justin Verlander and the Detroit Tigers in the 2012 World Series. However, no home run in baseball history has been worth as many runs as the one Sandoval hit in the second All-Star Game for Baseball United, the new baseball league based in India, Pakistan, and the United Arab Emirates.

The league kicked off with two All-Star games played in Dubai. Sure, there's only four teams in the entire league, but Sandoval was eminently qualified, as the No. 4 pick in the first round of the league's inaugural draft. Kung Fu Panda will play for the Abu Dhabi Falcons when Baseball United starts its first season next November.

Not only were these the first professional games played in the Middle East, they were the first professional games played with the golden "Money Ball." It's literally a golden ball. If a batter hits a home run with it, the runs count double. That's how Sandoval, hitting with Dillon Thomas and Andrelton Simmons on base, delivered the world's first six-run homer.

In the words of Baseball United,'s announcer, "Lock it, cock it, rocket, restock it!" Will that home run call catch on in major league baseball? We're going to say no.

Sandoval finished the game with seven RBIs as the East All-Stars swept the two-game series. Why was he on the East team when Abu Dhabi is the westernmost city in the league? It's just another mystery of Baseball United.

There's a few other new rules for the new league. Some players will only hit, and get "designated runners" to run the bases for them, something Sandoval might utilize. If games are tied after nine innings, the winner will be determined by a Home Run Derby.

While this is the first gold Money Ball in baseball, we've seen these innovations in other sports, mainly ones airing as part of MTV's 'Rock N' Jock" series. In Rock N' Jock basketball, players could aim at a much higher ten-point basket, and later, an even higher 25-point basket.

Despite his historic effort in Rock N' Jock, Miller couldn't hang with the Harlem Globetrotters after his NBA career ended, getting released by the team for having "no appreciation for what it takes mentally and physically to be a Harlem Globetrotter."

Rock N' Jock baseball also had their own version of the Money Ball, in the form of allowing Salt n' Pepa, plus their DJ Spinderella, to run the bases together. That backfired when the trio tried to advance on a Jose Canseco error and Treach from Naughty By Nature tagged out all three for a triple play.

The gold Money Ball has already led to strategic innovations in Baseball United. The rules say that a Money Ball transfers to the next hitter after a walk, so pitcher Brian Schlitter intentionally walked Robinson Cano to avoid facing him with a Money Ball.

Baseball United has another year to work out the particulars of their new game, but Pablo Sandoval will forever be the first six-run home run hitter in baseball history. Who knows? Maybe the Panda will even hit the first Money Ball grand slam for eight runs a true baseball immortality. At least in Dubai.

Sean Keane (he/him) is a writer, stand-up, and co-host of the Roundball Rock NBA podcast.