"Unfair Ball" is the tenth episode of the anime series, Sonic X. It first aired on 8 June 2003 and 8 November 2003 in Japan and the United States respectively.
- Sonic the Hedgehog
- Miles "Tails" Prower
- Knuckles the Echidna
- Amy Rose
- Cream the Rabbit
- Christopher Thorndyke
- Lindsey Thorndyke (Mentioned)
- Chuck Thorndyke
- Mister Tanaka
- Albert Butler (First appearance)
- Elmer Johnson (First appearance)
- Scarlet Garcia
- Doctor Eggman
- E-21 Ballios (Only appearance)
- "Gotta Go Fast" - Opening theme (USA and CAN)
- "Sonic X" - Opening theme (AUS, NZ and UK)
- "Gotta Go Fast" (shortened) - Closing theme
The episode starts with Tails piloting the X Tornado above Station Square for a test. It flies very smoothly now that he has installed the green Chaos Emerald as a power source. Suddenly, the emerald starts reacting with something, indicating another Chaos Emerald is nearby, and the plane is forced to dive uncontrollably towards a baseball stadium called Diamond Stadium. At the moment, a man named Albert Butler runs to the center of the stadium telling Tails to stop who almost gets hit by the X Tornado when Tails is able to regain control of the plane and soar upwards. Tails lands outside the stadium and enters into the stadium. After being amazed by its views he encounters Albert who was initially frightened by the sight of Tails until the fox convinces him otherwise. Albert converses with Tails that he has worked in Diamond Stadium as a groundskeeper for thirty years and sadly, he mentions that the stadium is scheduled to be demolished soon because apparently Diamond Stadium's manager wants to build an indoors stadium. Tails says that he is looking for Chaos Emeralds and Albert reveals that he found one in the stadium earlier. When the two emeralds are brought together in close proximity, they start glowing and shoot a bright light into the sky.
All around Station Square, people notice the light from the two emeralds. Dr. Eggman and Decoe also notices and sees that it is emitted from the baseball stadium. Suspecting that it is a Chaos Emerald, Eggman prepares for his departure to Diamond Stadium. Meanwhile at the Thorndyke mansion, Ella is attempting to teach proper dining manners to Sonic and co. over dinner. Amy and Cream learn quickly, but Sonic believes it is a waste of time. Bokkun, dressed up as a baseball player, arrives with a message from Eggman, who asks Sonic to look out through a window. Sure enough, everyone in the house recognises the light that the two Chaos Emeralds have created. As Eggman knows that both he and Sonic and co. want the emeralds; this time however, he wants both parties to settle with good sports and awaits him at Diamond Stadium where he challenges them to a winner-takes-all baseball game to win the two emeralds before the message ends. Bokkun starts batting balls at the heroes amusingly while they struggle to avoid them. Ella picks him up and then throws him out of the house. Sonic and co. then set off for Diamond Stadium.
Back at Diamond Stadium, the light fades away while Albert wonders what has happened when Tails explains that this always occurs when two Chaos Emeralds are together. Eggman arrives at Diamond Stadium, but when he sees that only Tails is there, he assumes that Sonic and co. has forfeited the game. Using a mechanical hand on his Egg Mobile, he attempts to steal Tails' emerald but Tails dodges the hand but then it turns its attention towards Albert and easily snatches the Chaos Emerald he's holding. Eggman warns Tails to surrender his Chaos Emerald or he will take it by force. Tails runs away and the hand follows him and is just about to reach Tails until Knuckles arrives and smashes the giant robotic hand. Sonic and the others arrive shortly afterwards, so Eggman introduces the gang to his fellow teammates. A flying saucer then appears above the stadium grounds and shines a bright light at the field emerging an army of E-21 Ballios. Eggman now is ready to play and Chuck, who happens to be a huge baseball fan, accepts on their behalf. Tails objects for fear of ruining the stadium's turf, but Albert says it is okay, as the stadium will be demolished soon anyway. Chuck recognizes Albert as he has seen him in the stadium many years ago and he is known to be friends with the stadium's owner, Elmer Johnson. Chuck cheerfully feels honored to play baseball until Eggman cuts him off. While everyone else is either warming up or feeling excited or not interested about the game, Chris suspects that Eggman is possibly up to something. Knuckles also doesn't like the idea and attempts to object, warning the consequences should Eggman win but then everyone begins to threaten Knuckles' pride which convinces the echidna to play.
The match between Sonic's team and Eggman's team finally starts, with Sonic's team to bat and Eggman's team to field. Chris was the first to bat and the Ballios pitcher throws a superfast fastball that Chris had no time to react to the ball's motion to hit it. Very soon, Chris receives three strikes and is therefore out, wondering how anybody is able to hit a fast pitch. Tails was next to bat and received an unusual pitch from the Ballios pitcher that it stretched its arm across a long distance and flicked it to the catcher. Tails reported this unfair pitch to Decoe as the umpire, but Decoe simply states that the Ballios pitcher had long arms. After the outcome with Tails, Amy was next to bat but instead of an actual bat, she uses her Piko Piko Hammer. While Amy is able to hit a powerful shot, a Ballios fielder threw another Ballios fielder up into the air and successfully catches Amy out, ending the inning with Sonic's team with zero runs.
Now it is Sonic's team to field with Amy as the team's pitcher and Mr. Tanaka as the team's catcher while Eggman's team is to bat. Amy pitches the ball and it directly hits the Ballios batter, shattering it into pieces. Later on, just when Amy begins to pitch, a Ballios robot standing on the base takes off while the batting Ballios robot misses and receives a strike, Mr. Tanaka throws the ball to Tails where Ballios' next base to run to is and surprisingly, the robot extends its legs leaping over a wide distance to the base, which was called safe by Decoe, much to Tails' disgrace. The next pitch was hit an out-of-the-park only for Sonic to catch it but Chuck explained that if it goes outside the fence, the catch doesn't count. Sonic, in response, states why do they have to play the game in accordance to the rules anyway if Eggman himself is not.
The inning ended and Sonic's team and Eggman's team are now batting and fielding again respectively. When Amy batted the pitch, it hits the Ballios pitcher, shattering it into pieces. The game progresses further and when Knuckles is next to bat, he successfully hits a home-run, evening up with Eggman's team. Scarlet Garcia, who witnessed the bright light earlier, follows them to the stadium with her news crew and starts reporting on the baseball game. Although it is Mr. Tanaka's turn to bat, Chuck uses Cheese instead as the Chao happily steps into the field. The Ballios pitcher seems to have difficulty in pitching to Cheese's appropriate hitting level and throws four consecutive "ball" pitches, allowing Cheese to move to the first base without any effort, much to Dr. Eggman's as he yelled angrily from the sidelines. The next batter is Cream and just before the Ballios pitcher throws the pitch, Cream requested at the robot not to throw too hard. Being infatuated to Cream's kindness, the Ballios pitcher simply drops the ball, allowing Cream to take first base, while Eggman angrily yells at the Ballios pitcher again. Knuckles hits another home run shot, leaving both Sonic and Eggman's team tied. The stands are then quickly filled with civilians cheering for Sonic. It is then Chris' turn to bat and Chris, like before, quickly receives two strikes before Sonic calls a timeout. Sonic advises Chris to concentrate and not to give up as Sonic believes that Chris can get a hit. The final pitch is then played and seemingly Chris has received a third strike only for Chuck to tell Chris to run as if he actually batted the pitch successfully. Sonic quickly runs all the way to home while Chris manages to reach the first base safely.
When Sonic's team finally edges into the lead, Eggman decides to take matters into his own hands in order to get Sonic's team forfeiting the game and remotely activates one of his robots, which attaches itself onto Sonic's head and pretends to panic that it will soon explode. Sonic tries to shake it off by running around the stadium at high speeds but the Ballios head remains attached. Knuckles asks Sonic to jump into the air while Knuckles jumps into the air as well charging towards Sonic and knocks the Ballios head off at the last second, saving Sonic but during the distraction, Eggman takes his cyan Chaos Emerald and escapes along with his other teammates. The crowd has really enjoyed the game and starts cheering wildly. Elmer Johnson, the owner of Diamond Stadium, arrives, having seen the game on TV and says that it was all thanks to his friend Albert Butler's dedication. He offers Albert a new job to move transport Diamond's turf into the new stadium intact which Albert gladly accepts. Chuck vows that everyone has learned to work together and hopefully be even stronger the next time they meet Eggman.
- The following scenes have been cut from the English dub:
- The groundskeeper's name is Alfred Butler in the Japanese version while in the English version, it is changed to Albert Butler. This was likely changed by 4Kids due to the character of Alfred Pennyworth from DC Comics, who is Batman's butler.
- The groundskeeper finds the Chaos Emerald in the grass in the Japanese version while in the English version he finds the Chaos Emerald next to a dumpster.
- Elmer Johnson leaves the care of Diamond Stadium in Alfred's hands in the Japanese version while in the English version, Elmer Johnson offers Albert a new job at his new baseball stadium across town.
- The E-21 Ballios robots make some sounds at some points that were mute in the English dub.
- The rules of baseball were misrepresented when Tails received a strike, as he did not swing his bat at the baseball and the baseball did not enter his 'strike zone'.
- On any pitch, if the batter swings at the baseball and misses, he is charged with a strike. If the batter does not swing, the home plate umpire judges whether the baseball passed through the strike zone. The strike zone is the area over the home plate through which a pitch must pass to be called a strike, roughly between the batter's armpits and knees. If the baseball, or any part of it, passes through the strike zone, it is ruled a strike; otherwise, it is counted as a ball for the pitcher. When the Ballios pitched the baseball, Tails did not swing his bat and the baseball went over his shoulder, well outside of his strike zone. Therefore, Tails should not have received a strike; rather, the Ballios should have received a ball.
Title in other languages
|Japanese||激闘！ソニック野球軍||Fierce Fight! Sonic Baseball Team|
|French||La belle équipe||The great team|
|German||Unfaires Spiel||Unfair game|
|Italian||Una partita scorretta / Sfida accettata||Incorrect match / Challenge accepted|
|Spanish||¡Enfrentamiento! El equipo de béisbol de Sonic||Confrontation! The baseball team Sonic|
- The Australian DVD gives the name of this episode as "Chaos Emerald Battle At The Baseball Stadium".
- Eggman wears a costume exclusive to this episode.
- The tops of all of the E-21 Ballios robots are exactly the same as the top Eggman is wearing.
- When Eggman activates one of his E-21 Ballios robots to launch its head and attach it to Sonic and claims that it will self-destruct, which shares a similarity with the Grabber's method of attacking in the games.
- This is the first episode in the series where Tails is seen flying with his twin-tails.