Fake pick-off move becomes a balk

The pitcher fakes a throw to third and then spins and fakes a throw to first. Usually, the move has fans yelling "balk", but now, the umpires will be yelling "balk", too.

It's a move that hardly ever works, but you see it at least once in every major league game. Runners on first and third and pitchers are bound to try the old fake to third and then look at first. If it works once in a season, it's amazing.

Now, it won't work at all, because the move has been officially declared a balk.

The move has been in the works since the new collective bargaining agreement was signed and last May, Major League Baseball's Playing Rules Committee approved the proposal. MLB executives and the umpires union were in agreement, although the player's association - pardon the pun - balked at the plan.

Two weeks ago, the owners approved the rule change, putting it into effect. The last CBA did allow for the rule change, but only after at least a one-year wait to make the change.

It's thought that one of the intents in approving the rule is to help speed up the game. Many times, a pitcher would use the move simply to give himself more time to think about how he wanted to approach a hitter or to give a relief pitcher a little more time to warm up.

Former pitcher Jeff Nelson told the New York Times, "I think now, the runner at first might get a bit of an advantage. All it's used for is to keep the runner at first close. I might have done it 100 times and gotten two guys on it."


RoyalCurve.com Recommended Stories


  • Peyton Manning emerged alone atop yet another category in the NFL record book tonight vs the Niners, as he tossed touchdown #509 under the national spotlight of Sunday Night Football (NBC). (Photo…

  • Former USC and NFL running back LenDale White added tons of drama to what was a relatively quiet Homecoming weekend for the Trojans.

  • Here’s a way to watch football and improve your golf swing at the same time. In your living room (or on the range), practice the one-minute golf swing, as shown in this video. Set the timer on your…

  • Dr. Roto, like many others, can't believe Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson (pictured above) passed for over 300 yards and rushed for over 100 yards in the same game. First time that's ever happened…

  • As soon as those winds fall off, get into the stand! I always tell people you can't kill them if you aren't out, but if you want to try and pick an opportune time – this is it.

Up Next


Tweets