A Balk Story

The York Colonial Tournament Story by Denny Rotz

Umpires miss the dropping of the hands to the sides because it happens so quickly sometimes. The pitcher must drop his hands when he steps back and disengages from the rubber.

In a tournament game in The York Colonial Tournament (York County, PA) there was a pitcher on a team from Ohio. Pitching from the set position with a runner on second base, he stepped back off the rubber with his pivot foot and looked back at the runner. He then re-engaged the rubber and pitched to the batter.

I was part of a three-man crew that included a former minor league umpire with thirteen years experience. At the end of the inning the pro umpire called us together and asked “What just happened?” I spoke and said the pitcher balked and he agreed. He also said because it was done so fluidly we did not call it. No one complained. Thank the lord, most people do not know the rules.

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