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Thread: Baseball and English

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    Baseball and English

    Baseball has always been a mystery to me. There was nowhere to watch it being played so as hard as I tried I couldn’t fully understand what it was about. I know the game is deeply rooted in America, Americans don’t care for soccer but love baseball instead, and their love for the game has subsequently had its imprint on the language. There are many baseball related expressions in English I did not understand before but I hope I’ll be able to understand now that I have at last a TV channel where they air baseball world cup. Could you, baseball enlightened folks, remember the expressions you use or hear them used that are linked to baseball some way or other? Knowing baseball related vocabulary can be a great boost to better understanding English.
    I could not make head or tales of the extracts below, but now I can owing to my new sports TV channel.

    I was once a barefoot boy with cheek of tan.
    I dreamed of grand slam home runs...


    A grand slam is a home run with the bases "loaded"-- a runner standing on each of the three. Your home run advances them all, and it's worth four points. Baseball is a fairly low-scoring game as a rule, and a grand slam is a dramatic way to reverse the outcome. Especially if you get one in the bottom of the ninth with two outs and a full count, and your team is down by three. Sheer pandemonium.

    What about you, people learning English as a second language? Can you?

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by alexB
    a TV channel where they air baseball world [s:2rygflua]cup[/s:2rygflua] SERIES .
    Okay, if you ever here the National Anthem, "Star-Spangled Banner," being sung during an Orioles game (that's Baltimore, Maryland), you will hear a big "Ohhhhh!" at the part of "O Say does that star-spangled banner yet wave..." (also during any Maryland Terps games and sometimes during Redskins and it even happened when President Obama spoke last week!). Ohhhh as in the "Ohhh's" for Orioles.
    I only speak two languages, English and bad English.
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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by rockzmom
    Quote Originally Posted by alexB
    a TV channel where they air baseball world [s:1e0kq5fl]cup[/s:1e0kq5fl] SERIES .
    Well, self-improvement has always been a passion of mine. What did I miss here?

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by alexB
    Could you, baseball enlightened folks, remember the expressions you use or hear them used that are linked to baseball some way or other?
    to strike out= to fail
    to hit a home run= to have a great success
    throw a curve ball= do something unexpected
    go for the fences= go for broke, try to do it all at once (implies hitting a home run i.e. hitting a ball over the fence.)
    ballpark figure= estimate
    switch hitter= bisexual (lit. a batter who can hit from both sides of the plate.)
    to play hard ball= to get tough

    it's not just baseball, there are tons of sports expressions used in everyday speech.
    Кому - нары, кому - Канары.

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by alexB
    Baseball has always been a mystery to me. There was nowhere to watch it being played so as hard as I tried I couldn’t fully understand what it was about. I know the game is deeply rooted in America, Americans don’t care for soccer but love baseball instead, and their love for the game has subsequently had its imprint on the language. There are many baseball related expressions in English I did not understand before but I hope I’ll be able to understand now that I have at last a TV channel where they air baseball world cup. Could you, baseball enlightened folks, remember the expressions you use or hear them used that are linked to baseball some way or other? Knowing baseball related vocabulary can be a great boost to better understanding English.
    I could not make head or tales of the extracts below, but now I can owing to my new sports TV channel.

    I was once a barefoot boy with cheek of tan.
    I dreamed of grand slam home runs...


    A grand slam is a home run with the bases "loaded"-- a runner standing on each of the three. Your home run advances them all, and it's worth four points. Baseball is a fairly low-scoring game as a rule, and a grand slam is a dramatic way to reverse the outcome. Especially if you get one in the bottom of the ninth with two outs and a full count, and your team is down by three. Sheer pandemonium.

    What about you, people learning English as a second language? Can you?

    Here's a link regarding Abbott and Costello's "Who's on First" comedy routine:

    viewtopic.php?f=29&t=14507&p=182555&hilit=abbott#p 182555


    Scott

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by alexB
    Quote Originally Posted by rockzmom
    Quote Originally Posted by alexB
    a TV channel where they air baseball world [s:1ohigw20]cup[/s:1ohigw20] SERIES .
    Well, self-improvement has always been a passion of mine. What did I miss here?
    Major League Baseball 101:
    (hey someone with really good baseball facts correct me if I am wrong here....)

    you score "Runs", not "goals"

    There are 2 Leagues: National League (NL) and American League (AL).

    Each league has 3 divisions: East, West, and Central.

    The champion is called the World Series, not a "Cup" as in Soccer, Hockey or Rugby.

    The American League lets you have a "designated hitter" (or the DH) who can bat for the pitcher. This is ONLY for the pitcher, no other player. The home team sets the rule when NL and AL teams play against each other. So, if the AL team is the home team, then you can have a DH. If the NL is the home team, then there is no DH, even during the World Series.

    You always should have a 7th-inning stretch and singing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" is a MUST! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fo9fEADUqPs
    I only speak two languages, English and bad English.
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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by rockzmom

    The championship is called the World Series, not a "Cup" as in Soccer, Hockey or Rugby.
    The champion is called the World Series winner.
    Кому - нары, кому - Канары.

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by sperk
    to strike out= to fail
    to hit a home run= to have a great success
    throw a curve ball= do something unexpected
    go for the fences= go for broke, try to do it all at once (implies hitting a home run i.e. hitting a ball over the fence.)
    ballpark figure= estimate
    switch hitter= bisexual (lit. a batter who can hit from both sides of the plate.)
    to play hard ball= to get tough

    it's not just baseball, there are tons of sports expressions used in everyday speech.
    Yesterday I’m watching Stargate Atlantis 4th season’s Be ALL My Sins Remember’d and what comes up but the phrase from your list.
    CARTER: Wow! Well, it has been one hell of a day. There's one more thing you need to see. McKay has kind of thrown us a curve ball.

    SHEPPARD: Oh, great! I was just thinking we need more of those today.
    Thanks.

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by sperk
    Quote Originally Posted by rockzmom

    The championship is called the World Series, not a "Cup" as in Soccer, Hockey or Rugby.
    The champion is called the World Series winner.
    Sperk! thanks for fixing that for me!!!
    I only speak two languages, English and bad English.
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    Re: Baseball and English

    Ah, baseball. Every summer I get a couple Russian kids working in the lobby of the motel. I subject them to a merciless season of Red Sox games on the big screen. There is a baseball diamond (field) behind the place that is home to the Hyannis Mets, a team in the Cape Cod League. I bring them to batting cages and most seem to enjoy hitting. We play whiffleball.

    I'm on base with that (you). A good idea. I understand/agree.
    Take one for the team. When a batter gets hit by a pitch, they go to first base. Means doing something painful for the greater good. Like dating an ugly girl.
    Hit it out of the park. Homerun. We say 'Pahked it'.
    A pop up. an easy task.
    Three strikes. Someone made 3 mistakes, gets fired or goes to jail.

    National Anthem at Turner Field in Atlanta ends with HOME OF THE BRAVES!

    Last two words of the National Anthem are "Play ball!".
    I'm easily amused late at night...

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Sperk,

    What about "way out in left field" I believe it comes from baseball, yet I have no clue as to why. Sure I could google it... but it seems you might know and could probably give a much better answer!
    I only speak two languages, English and bad English.
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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by rockzmom
    Sperk,

    What about "way out in left field" I believe it comes from baseball, yet I have no clue as to why. Sure I could google it... but it seems you might know and could probably give a much better answer!
    Actually, I have no idea. The only thing that comes to mind is a combination of the distance involved (from home plate to left field) and the traditional notion of "right" being proper and correct while left being strange and unfamiliar. BTW, (for whoever cares) there's also "out of left field" meaning something very unexpected. Obviously, "left field" comes from baseball but I don't see any relationship to the saying.
    Кому - нары, кому - Канары.

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by rockzmom
    Sperk,

    What about "way out in left field" I believe it comes from baseball, yet I have no clue as to why. Sure I could google it... but it seems you might know and could probably give a much better answer!
    Google would get you this:

    : : where did the phrase "out of left field" came from?
    : : my intuition says it from baseball, but why left and not right?

    : WAY OUT IN LEFT FIELD - Out of touch, eccentric, odd; also, misguided. This term alludes to the left field of baseball, and there is some disagreement concerning its origin. Some writers suggest it comes from the remoteness of left field, but only in very asymmetrical ballparks is left field more distant than right field. Others suggest it alludes to the 'wrongness' of left as opposed to the 'rightness' of right. A correspondent of William Safire's in the "New York Times" said it was an insulting remark made to those who bought left-field seats in New York's Yankee Stadium during the years that Babe Ruth played right field, putting them far away from this outstanding player. Perhaps the most likely theory is that it alludes to inmates of the Neuropsychiatric Institute, a mental hospital, which was located behind left field in Chicago's old West Side Park. Hence being told you are 'out in left field' would mean you were accused of being as peculiar as a mental patient. In any event, the term has been used figuratively for various kinds of eccentricity and misguidedness since the first half of the 20th century. John Ciardi also cited a synonym, 'out in left pickle,' maintaining that 'pickle' was baseball slang for the outfield. Perhaps it once was, but it is no longer current." "Southpaws & Sunday Punches and other Sporting Expressions" by Christine Ammer (Penguin Books, New York, 1993).

    Another explanation, from Eric Partridge, "A Dictionary of Catch Phrases American and British": "you're way out in left field . . . 'In baseball, left field is at the furthest distance from the batter, to his left; [literally] it means "You're hopelessly far away from where you should be to catch the batted ball and thus put the batter out'" . . . Hence, set for a fall, a beating, a defeat; without a chance of winning . . ."
    Seems to me this idea works only if batters do in fact seldom hit the ball to left field. I don't follow baseball enough to know.

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Step up to the plate. get ready to bat/ prepare to work etc.

    Screwball. A pitch that is very irregular/ a person that is very irregular.
    I'm easily amused late at night...

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    Re: Baseball and English

    Quote Originally Posted by fortheether
    Here's a link regarding Abbott and Costello's "Who's on First" comedy routine:

    viewtopic.php?f=29&t=14507&p=182555&hilit=abbott#p 182555


    Scott
    Who's on first, What's on second, I Don't Know is on third...
    I was curious for some time as to what was the Raymond from the “Rain Man” often murmuring to himself throughout the film and when I found out I was extremely disappointed.
    The names of the basemen are too farfetched, so the sketch is absolutely absurd from my point of view. To be funny it should have had at least a grain of sense, but it had not. Or perhaps my English level is not yet high enough.

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    Re: Baseball and English

    USA beats Cuba 8 – 5 in International Baseball Federation (IBAF) Baseball World Cup.
    Sorry guys, but the championship that I’m watching is called just like that.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IBAF
    Thanks to all for the feedback. Now I know what the second most sung in the USA song is, but I hear they sing only the refrain. Do you happen to sing the whole song at a 7th-inning stretch?
    And about the “Star Spangled Banner”, does anyone know it further then the first verse?

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