This weekend, the following situation occurred: With
Don Mattingly at bat and the bases empty, the Minnesota
pitcher attempted to deliver a pitch, but the ball
slipped out of his hands and rolled about halfway towards
the plate before coming to a stop on the pseudo-grass.
Yankee manager Showalter argued that the delivery should
be called a ball, but the umpire ruled that since the
ball did not enter foul territory, it should be ruled no pitch.
I was under the impression that
(a) had there been runners on base this would have been a balk
(b) any action which would be a balk with runners on base is
to be called a ball when there are no runners on base.
Did the umps call it right? If so, where is my mistake?
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