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9 hours ago, Guest Ted said:

Once a pitcher starts his windup can he hesitate before he throws the ball

As long as any part of his body (toes wiggling, eyebrows twitching, etc.) is in motion, he is legal. With no runners on, he's probably legal in any case.

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2011 NFHS Baseball Rules Interpretations

SITUATION 20: With R1 on third base, the pitcher is in the windup position. At the top of his motion, he pauses for two or three seconds and then delivers. RULING: The umpire shall declare a balk and score R1 from third base. After a pitcher starts his motion to pitch, he must continue the motion without interruption or alteration. (6-1-2)

NFHS rule 6-1-2 states (concerning the pitcher):

“…After he starts his movement to pitch, he must continue the motion without interruption or alteration.”

PENALTY:  The ball is dead immediately when an illegal pitch occurs. If there is no runner, a ball is awarded the batter. If there is a runner, such illegal act is a balk. In both situations, the umpire signals dead ball.

The interpretation was issued by the NFHS in 2011 in response to what some people call the Japanese pause and to re-affirm that the rule had not changed.

The NCAA has an approved ruling that okays the pause in the windup and it can be found in 2018 rule 9-1a Note 2. The OBR has an official interpretation that states the pause is okay in the windup and that interpretation can be found in the Wendelstedt manual and the BRD (section 429, p. 286):

Official Interpretation:  Wendelstedt:  A brief pause in the windup is “not enough to be considered a start and stop.” 

 

So, it is only high school that penalizes the pause in the windup position.

 

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11 hours ago, Senor Azul said:

So, it is only high school that penalizes the pause in the windup position.

 

Yes, by rule.  But, generally not in practice. 

 

And, in all codes, it's going to depend on where in the motion the pitcher stops and for how long.

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I am confused here. If a pitcher with runner on throws from the windup and pauses for 3 seconds it seems to me my 64 year old mother could steal a base in that time. If he starts the motion and throws to a bag at anytime it’s a balk otherwise it’s just a kid that pauses and allows everyone to steal with ease

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5 hours ago, KCKUMP said:

I am confused here. If a pitcher with runner on throws from the windup and pauses for 3 seconds it seems to me my 64 year old mother could steal a base in that time. If he starts the motion and throws to a bag at anytime it’s a balk otherwise it’s just a kid that pauses and allows everyone to steal with ease

That doesn't sound like confusion. It sounds all correct to me, though I do not know your mother, so you might be wrong about that part.

Also, in FED from the windup F1 cannot legally step and throw to a base.

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