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Baseball Slang and Definitions Beginning with the Letter A

Have you ever sat down to watch a ball game, and here the announcer says, “That pitcher is all over the place!” Or how about, “he took it to the alley!” Are you the person who says, “What the hell is that supposed to mean?” Then this article is just for you. I’m going to go over some popular slang used in baseball and I’ll do it step by step with the alphabet. I guess you could say this is going to be a sort of dictionary of baseball lingo, and this particular article starts out like Webster’s Dictionary, with the letter A. Of course, some of these terms are hardly used anymore, but who can you say they can? Don’t ever be hot again and hey, you might even learn some weird facts about the game!

Ace: 1. An excellent pitcher. The term generally refers to the best starting pitcher on a team, although it can also refer to the best reliever on a pitching staff, as in BULLPEN ACE or RELIEF ACE. “Ace” derives from Asa Brainard, the lone pitcher for the 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings team. Brainard’s record, as well as the team’s record, was 56 wins, 0 losses, and one tie. Thereafter, any pitcher who won many games was called “Asa”, which was eventually shortened to “ace”. Also STOP. 2. A race. In the 1840s, when men’s recreational clubs were forming the first amateur baseball teams, terms on cards were often applied to baseball, such as “ace” for a run scored. Currently, the first definition is the most widely used.

Action Pitch: A pitch thrown on a three-ball, two-strike count with two outs and a man on first base, men on first and second, or with the bases loaded. In either of these situations, the man or men on base start running just before the pitch is thrown, to jump in the event of a base hit.

Afterpiece: The second game of a doubleheader. Also NIGHTCAP, which is the most widely used term today.

Agent: A representative hired by a player to handle his business affairs, especially contract negotiations. In 1970, baseball team owners agreed that a player could use a representative in salary negotiations. Three years later, Jerry Kapstein became the first agent under the new system. His first client was Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Richie Zisk.

Air Ball: A flying ball, a baseball term from the late 19th century.

Ike Alibi: A player who has an excuse for each of his misses on the field. The name comes from a 1915 Ring Lardner short story of that title about such a player.

Alley: The area of ​​the outfield between the left fielder and the center fielder, or between the center fielder and the right fielder. Also GAP and POWER ALLEY.

All Over The Plate: Unable to throw strikes. The phrase refers to a pitcher whose pitches are consistently and variously outside the strike zone, and can also refer to the pitches themselves. Also WILD.

All-Star Break – The three-day break in the regular season during which the All-Star Game is played.

All-Star Game: An annual exhibition game that pits the best players in the American League against the best in the National League. Also SUMMER CLASSIC. In 1933, Chicago Tribune sports editor Arch Ward conceived the idea for the game, to be played in Chicago’s Comiskey Park in conjunction with the city’s Century of Progress exposition. The game took place on July 6, with Babe Ruth’s two-run home run leading the Americans to a 4–2 victory. Selection for the All-Star squads, always a controversial process, was decided by the respective coaches (the captains of the previous season’s league champions) during the 1946 game, although fans offered their suggestions in informal polls conducted. by baseball officials in 1933 and 1934. From 1947 to 1957, the selection was in the hands of the fans. But after Cincinnati supporters were accused of stuffing the polls in favor of Red 1957, Major League Baseball players, coaches and managers began choosing All-Star teams, and did so until 1969. Commissioner Bowie Kuhn returned the vote to the fans in 1970.

Alternative Pitch: A euphemism for an illegal pitch. When a pitcher is having a bad game, he often has no choice but to go to his bag of tricks, the most useful of which is illegally putting some foreign substance, such as hair cream, saliva, or sweat, on the ball. , so that it breaks sharply and unexpectedly when it approaches the plate.

American Association: 1. A professional baseball league that lasted from 1882 to 1891. It was the third major league formed, after the National Association (1871-1875) and the National League (1876-). 2. One of the three minor leagues in the top, or AAA, level of the minors, along with the Pacific Coast League and the International League.

American League: One of the two major leagues, the other being the National League. AL abbreviated. The American League was founded in 1901 by Byron Bancroft “Ban” Johnson and immediately became an equal competitor to the National League, which had been founded 15 years earlier. The new league was dubbed the “youth circuit”, a name that is still used despite the fact that the two leagues have been considered equal since the early years of their rivalry. The founding member teams of the AL were in Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC. In 1969, each major league was restructured into two six-team divisions known as the Eastern and Western Divisions. In 1977, the American League added a team to each of its divisions. In 1994, the league, along with the National League, reorganized into three divisions (East, Central, and West) and added a second round to the playoffs in the form of the League Division Series, with the best team coming in second. advancing to the playoffs as a wild card team, in addition to the three divisional champions. Originally, the Milwaukee Brewers were in the Central division, but left to join the National League in 1998, and the Tampa Bay Devil Rays joined the East division, which maintained the league’s membership at 14 teams.

Angel: A cloud, in a virtually clear sky, that allows a fielder to better see a fly ball. Also known as GUARDIAN ANGEL.

Annie Oakley: A walk or a WALK. Traditionally, complimentary theater or sporting event tickets have been punched with holes to indicate that the tickets are free. In the late 1800s, these gifts were called “Annie Oakleys” after the famous riflewoman whose exploits included punching holes in small cards. Baseball observers quickly adapted “Annie Oakley” to mean a walk, which was also known and is still known as a “free ticket” or “free walk.”

Ant: A fan. The word dates from the early 1900s and is derived from the observation that fans in the stands often appear as small as ants to the players.

Appeal Play: A special appeal made by the defensive team to an umpire after a baserunner has failed to touch a fly ball or has refused to touch a base while advancing or returning to his original base. To put out the runner on an appeal, a defensive player with the ball must tag the runner or the base that he missed or the base from which he failed to tag correctly. The appeal must be made to the umpire before the next pitch. The umpire may have seen the misplay, but will not call it out unless the defense calls for it.

Apple: A baseball, named for its resemblance to an apple.

Arbitration: The process by which an objective party, or arbitrator, resolves a contractual dispute between a player and his team’s management. Such arbitration cases are binding; the ruling is entirely in favor of the player or the club. Officiating was first used in Major League Baseball in 1974.

Arlie Latham: A forceful ground ball that is difficult to field. Arlie Latham, a major league third baseman in the late 19th century, had a reputation for letting hard ground balls slide rather than risk injury by getting in front of them.

Arm: 1. Excellent throwing ability, as in “That outfield has an amazing arm.” 2. A strong throwing arm. Also known as BAZOOKA, CANNON, GUN, and RIFLE.

Around The Horn: Refers to a double play in which the third baseman fields a ground ball and throws to the second baseman, who forces a runner on second base and then throws to the first baseman to retire the batter. The term derives from the custom of ships taking the long route around Cape Horn at the tip of South America to get from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean, or vice versa, before the construction of the Panama Canal.

Artificial turf – A synthetic, carpet-like surface that has replaced grass fields in some major league stadiums. Also known as CARPET and CARPET. The first artificial playing surface was installed in the Houston Astrodome in 1965. On April 9 of that year, the New York Yankees defeated the Houston Astros, 2-1, in an exhibition at the Astrodome, the first game played on a synthetic surface. surface. Today, the only teams still using artificial turf are the Toronto Blue Jays, the Minnesota Twins, and the Tampa Bay Rays. Probably the best editorial comment on artificial turf came from a player, often attributed to Willie Mays or Dick Allen, who said, “If the cows won’t eat it, I won’t play on it.”

Ash: Beats. Ash has resilience and strength, and has long been a favorite type of wood for making bats.

Aspirin, Aspirin Tablet: A pitched or thrown baseball with such great velocity that it appears as small as an aspirin.

Assist: One credit for a fielder’s direct involvement in an out. Gets an assist for making a throw that results in a putout, or bunting a batted ball on a play that results in a putout.

There you go. Baseball lingo on the tune of the letter A!

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