Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Bassitt's Balk by Disengagement Scores Run After 3rd Step Off

Blue Jays pitcher Chris Bassitt balked home a run after stepping off for a third time with Rangers runner Mitch Garver dancing off third base, resulting in a disengagement violation that was immediately called by the umpires. Toronto played batter Josh Smith to pull toward right field and 'shifted' third baseman Cavan Biggio toward the shortstop position, leaving third base unguarded, allowing baserunner R3 Garver to take a sizeable lead.

Pitcher Bassitt attempted to keep the baserunner at bay by disengaging from the pitcher's plate and feigning to third base (pitchers are allowed to fake to third or first, but must disengage before starting the faking motion). Bassitt did this twice toward the end of Smith's at-bat, with R3 Garver and R2 Leody Taveras (who had stolen second earlier in the AB) returning to their bases safely each time.

When Garver strayed far down the foul line, Bassitt not only disengaged the rubber, but ran toward third base in an unsuccessful attempt to tag Garver. With Bassitt's attempt having failed, HP Umpire John Tumpane and 3B Umpire Mike Muchlinski simultaneously called "Time" and signaled Bassitt for a disengagement violation (third step-off), awarding the runners an extra base as a result.

Pitchers are allowed a maximum of two free disengagements per plate appearance. The "free disengagements remaining" counter resets back to two if any runner advances during the at-bat (e.g., due to a stolen base, error, balk, etc.) and a pitcher is allowed a third disengagement without penalty only if that third disengagement results in the retirement of a runner. If the runner is safe on the third disengagement, however, it is a balk and the runner(s) advance a base.

Video as follows:


Post a Comment