NCAA 9-3 Balk

NCAA 9-3 Balk


SECTION 3. If there is a runner or runners, a balk shall be called for the following action by a pitcher:

a. While touching the pitcher’s plate, any feinting motion without completing the throw toward the batter or toward first or third base.

b. When, before throwing to any base from a pitching position, the pitcher feints a throw to a base and, without breaking contact with the rubber, throws to another base;

c. While in a pitching position, throw to any base in an attempt to retire a runner without first stepping directly toward such base; or throw or feint a throw toward any base when it is not an attempt to retire a runner or prevent the runner from advancing;

1) The pitcher, while touching the pitcher’s rubber, must step toward the base, preceding or simultaneous with any move toward that base. The pitcher is committed, upon raising the lead leg, to throw to the base being faced, to second base or to the plate. When throwing or feinting a throw to a base not being faced, the pitcher must step immediately, directly and gain ground toward that base.

Note: If the pitcher throws to the first or third baseman who is playing off the base, a balk shall not be called if the fielder moves toward the occupied base in an attempt to retire the runner.

2) The “spin” or “open” move to second base is legal if the pitcher raises the lead leg and immediately, with a continuous motion, steps directly toward second base. The pitcher need not throw.

3) The pitcher shall step “ahead of the throw.” A snap throw followed by a step directly toward the base is a balk.

4) The pitcher may not prematurely flex either leg before stepping directly and throwing to first base.

5) The jump-turn move is legal if the pitcher’s free foot steps toward and gains ground to the base that the ball is being thrown. Otherwise, a balk shall be called.

6) Stepping toward second base without completing the throw is legal if the base is occupied by a runner or there is an attempt to retire a runner.

d. Making an illegal pitch, such as a quick pitch; Note: If a runner on third base breaks for home plate, the pitcher may speed up the delivery but must continue to use a normal pitching sequence and arm action.

e. Unnecessarily delaying the game;

f. While not in possession of the ball, the pitcher stands with either foot or both feet on any part of the dirt area (circle) of the mound during a hidden-ballplay attempt;

g. Failing to throw to the batter immediately after making any motion with any part of the body such as the pitcher habitually uses in the delivery;

Note: If the pitcher, with a runner on base, stops or hesitates the delivery because the batter steps out of the box, holds up a hand or uses any other action as if calling time, it shall not be a balk. The rule has been violated by both the batter and the pitcher, and the umpire shall call “Time” and begin the play anew.

h. The pitcher takes either hand off the ball after having taken a stretch or set position unless making a pitch or throwing to any base;

Note: The pitcher may momentarily adjust the ball in the glove and separate the hands as long as it is prior to assuming a legal pitching position.

i. The pitcher pitches while the catcher is not in the catcher’s box. The catcher must have both feet within the catcher’s box until the ball leaves the pitcher’s hand;

Note: This is an illegal pitch with no runners on base.

j. The pitcher delivers the pitch from the set position without coming to a complete and discernible stop, or the pitcher comes to more than one stop from the set position (see 9-1-b);

Note: With the bases unoccupied, the pitcher does not need to come to a complete and discernible stop.

k. From the windup position, the pitcher makes more than two pumping motions before delivering to the plate;

l. From the set position, if the entire free foot or any part of the stride leg breaks the plane of the back edge of the pitcher’s rubber and the pitcher does not throw or feint a motion to second base or pitch to home plate (see 9-1-b-3); and

m. When the pitcher makes a natural pitching motion while not touching the pitcher’s rubber.

PENALTY for a. through m.—Balk. The ball becomes dead and each runner must advance one base.

1) If the balk immediately is followed by a pitch that permits the batter and each runner to advance a minimum of one base, the balk is ignored and the ball remains live.

Example: The batter and all runner(s) advance when a wild pitch is either ball four or strike three.

Note: After a balk that is followed by a base hit, a runner who misses the first base to which the runner is advancing and who, before the next pitch, is called out on appeal, shall be considered as having advanced one base for the purpose of this rule.

2) If a balk immediately is followed by a wild throw by the pitcher to a base that permits a runner(s) to advance to or beyond the base to which that runner is entitled, the balk shall be acknowledged. The umpire will call the balk in the usual manner, but shall not call “Time” until all play has ceased (runners have stopped trying to advance and/or a fielder is in possession of the ball in the infield).

3) If only the runner advances to or beyond the base to which he is entitled because of a wild pitch after a balk, the balk is still acknowledged.

Note 1: A runner(s) may advance beyond the base that is entitled at the runner’s own risk.

Note 2: When a balk occurs, the pitch is nullified and the batter will resume the at-bat with the count that existed unless:

a) The wild pitch was ball four on which all runners (including the batterrunner) advanced one base.

b) The wild pitch was strike three on which the batter and all other runners advanced one base. In both situations (a) and (b) above, play proceeds without reference to the balk, because all runners (including the batter-runner) advanced one base on the pitch after the balk.

Note 3: If the balk is followed by a wild pitch that allows a runner to attempt to go beyond the base that he would have been awarded because of the balk, the runner advances at his own risk; he is either safe or out as a result of the play. The balk is still “acknowledged” as it relates to the batter and he will resume the at-bat with the count that existed when the balk occurred.

November 4, 2019
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