What is a Balk in Baseball? 2 Every Rules Explained

A balk is a baseball term for a pitcher who deliberately pitches balls other than strikes to a batter in an attempt to get the batter out. It is not uncommon for pitchers to intentionally balk if they are tired, or if they want to make the game more challenging for the batter.

What is a Balk in Baseball?

In baseball, a balk is any action taken by the pitcher that goes against the balk rule. The balk rule limits what the pitcher can do when at least one runner is on base.

The balk rule is there to make sure that the pitcher doesn’t trick the runner or runners. For example, a pitcher can’t pretend to throw to the batter but then throw the ball to a fielder to throw off the runner and possibly get the runner out.

What is a Balk in Baseball

When an umpire calls a balk, the ball is usually dead, which means play stops right away, and each runner moves up one base.

If, on the other hand, a pitch was made and the batter safely reached first base through a hit, a walk, an error, or some other way, and any runners safely moved at least one base, the balk doesn’t matter and the game keeps going.

Situations Make An Umpire To Call A Balk

Here are some situations where an umpire might call a balk when there are one or more runners on base:

  • The pitcher starts to make the usual movements for throwing a pitch, but stops in the middle of throwing it.
  • When the pitcher is in the “set” position, with his hands together in front of him, he does not stop completely.
  • With his foot on the pitching rubber, the pitcher pretends to throw to a base that isn’t taken or pretends to throw to first base when it’s already taken. If you take a step toward first base or start to throw, but don’t finish the throw, that’s the same as faking a throw.
  • The pitcher throws to a base before or without stepping toward that base while his foot is on the pitching rubber. After stepping off the rubber, the pitcher can throw anywhere.
  • The pitcher does something that is usually part of his pitching motion, but his foot is not on the rubber.

What is a Balk in Baseball

  • When the pitcher doesn’t have the ball, he stands on the pitching rubber or puts his foot on the pitching rubber to make it look like he has the ball.
  • The pitcher throws a ball before the batter has had enough time to get ready in the batter’s box. If no one was on base, the pitch would be called a “ball.”
  • During a pitch, the pitcher loses control of the ball and it goes over the foul line. If there were no runners on base, this would be a legal pitch and a “ball.”
  • When the pitcher throws a pitch, he doesn’t face the batter.
  • After stopping in the “set” position, the pitcher takes one hand off the ball or moves his hands apart without pitching or throwing.
  • While his foot is on the pitching rubber, the pitcher drops the ball on the pitcher’s mound.

Leave a Comment