Fake-to-Third, Throw-to-First is now a balk!
Matthew Cerrone , MetsBlog.com:
According to the New York Times, MLB has approved a rule change that will make the fake-to-third, throw-to-first pickoff move a balk.
“A large majority of the managers, I mean really a good amount, wanted to eliminate it,” Joe Torre told the Times. “So we presented it. … Just my experience, added to what they want, I made a case for it. The feeling was, you’re deceiving the runner or the hitter.”
You’ll get no complaint from me, and I almost always take the pitcher’s point of view. At this point, this move is more likely to get a groan from the crowd and slow down the game than it is to get anyone out.
That said, if I ever get the opportunity to throw out the first pitch in Citi Field, I still plan to do the fake-to-third, throw-to-first move before getting set again for the real throw. I’ve been saying it for years, and can’t turn back now…