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Lingo of the Game: Baseball Vocabulary

Baseball lingo is like any other kind of jargon: although it may seem complicated and incomprehensible at first, it is easy to understand once you become familiar with it. In fact, it usually does not require extensive knowledge of something to be able to understand the lingo. If you have a general idea of how something works, it is often possible to decipher the meanings of the lingo, even if you are not ready to use them yourself. Baseball lingo probably developed naturally as a way of building a baseball community and facilitating ease of conversation.

Baseball Lingo Examples

Baseball lingo can deal with all elements of the game. It talks about plays, equipment, pitches, plays, players, etc. One of the interesting things about baseball lingo is that it is more than just a form of communication; it adds an element of fun to the game because the lingo is more familiar and silly, and less official, than all the technical terms. In some ways, baseball lingo can even be less exclusionary than the professional language of the game because although both are not easily understood by outsiders, it is more expected that ordinary people would not understand silly terms or playful words.

There are many different examples of baseball lingo. Some are more common and recognized than others, but all are related to the game. Here are some good examples. An ace is the primary pitches of a team, the best the team has. A backdoor slider describes a sneaky pitch that is initially outside the strike zone but moves back over the plate at the last moment. Cheese is a crazy name for an exceptional fastball. When players hit a home run, it is referred to as a dinger. A pitch that is hit for a home run is said to be a gopher ball. Third base is also known as a hot corner. If a pitch comes really close to a batter's hands, it is called a jam. If someone has a batting average around .200, he is said to be around the Mendoza line. Balls traveling fast, anywhere, are called peas and baseball fights or scuffles are called rhubarbs.

Although these are only a few examples of baseball lingo, there are many others that are equally applicable, important, and interesting. If you really want to find out the meanings of and understand common baseball lingo, there are many places to look. Baseball books, specialized dictionaries, and numerous websites can provide lists of the words and meanings.

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