New Balk Crackdown Means Blue Jays Pitcher To Be Watched Closely By MLB

"It just sucks" to be singled out. That's the opinion of Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Kevin Gausman, whose delivery was specifically used by MLB in a rules demonstration to teams to show how they'll be cracking down on balks this season.

Gausman's always-in-motion front foot sees his heel continually tap down as he gets set to deliver the ball. It's his natural motion, but the umpires won't be having it anymore. Gausman does bring his tapping motion to a complete stop momentarily before coming to the plate, and that's what irks him about the league making him an example.

"It's something I'll have to change, obviously," said the 32-year-old right-hander. 

“It just sucks when you’re one of the guys that’s on the list, right? They’ll definitely be watching me a little bit closer than maybe the normal.”

During the MLB demonstration to teams, as noted by Kaitlyn McGrath in The Athletic, league executive Morgan Sword actually showed a clip of Gausman’s front foot bouncing before delivering a pitch with a runner on base, and said "Going forward, that’s going to be a balk.”

Although it ticks him off to be singled out like that, Gausman, at least, is looking on the bright side. "The good thing is we have six weeks to mess with my delivery and figure out what's going to be new and comfortable."

Photo: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports