Any run for which the pitcher is held accountable (i.e., the run did not score as a result of a fielding error or a passed ball). Primarily used to calculate the earned run average. In determining earned runs, an error charged to a pitcher is treated exactly like an error charged to any other fielder. Some pitchers, notably Ed Lynch, referred to earned runs as "earnies".
The action of fielding a batted ball (usually cleanly or almost so) but holding on to it rather than attempting to make a throw to a base to retire a runner. This is usually done because the fielder believes there is little chance of retiring the runner and that it would be preferable to allow the runner to reach one base unchallenged rather than risk committing an error that might allow the runner to advance additional bases. The phrase is usually used only to describe the action of an infielder, catcher, or pitcher. "That slow roller didn't get past a diving Scutaro, but he decided to eat the ball rather than risk a throw to nip the quick-running Gardner." Also commonly used in the past-tense. "The charging third baseman Cabrera ate the ball after that great bunt from Juan Pierre."
A very slow pitch with a high arcing trajectory. Invented by 1930s Pittsburgh Pirates hurler Rip Sewell, it is a part of Phillies pitcher Jose Contreras' repertoire; thrown very rarely to fool a hitter's timing. It is best used sparingly, because it can be very easy to hit without the element of surprise. Ted Williams said that the game-winning home run that he hit off of Sewell in the 1946 All-Star Game was his greatest thrill in baseball.
A player or coach who is disqualified from the game by an umpire for unsportsmanlike conduct. Synonyms include: tossed, thrown out, banished, chased, given the thumb, given the (ol') heave-ho, kicked out, booted, run, sent to the clubhouse.
When a pitcher who is normally a reliever or in the minor leagues is called on to start the game on short notice because the originally scheduled starter is injured or ill. Illustration: "With Chan Ho Park sidelined indefinitely by what was diagnosed as anemia, Mike Thompson is expected to get the call yet again as the emergency starter, arriving via Portland, where he has spent the past 10 days with the Triple-A Beavers".
An error is an act, in the judgment of the official scorer, of a fielder misplaying a ball in a manner that allows a batter or baserunner to reach one or more additional bases, when that advance could have been prevented by ordinary effort by the fielder. An error is also charged when a fielder fails to catch a foul fly ball that could have been caught with ordinary effort. The term error can also refer to the play in which an error was committed. Because the pitcher and catcher handle the ball so much, some misplays by them are called "wild pitch" and "passed ball", and are not counted as errors.
SYNONYMS: bobble, blooper, muff, miscue, flub, kick or boot ("Lopez kicked the grounder"; "Johnson booted it").
A position player, as opposed to a pitcher who may play only every few days. Sometimes a talented prospect who is a good pitcher but an outstanding hitter will be encouraged to focus on playing another position and thereby become an everyday player to take advantage of his hitting.
A position player who's a regular in the starting line-up in virtually every game, as opposed to either:
a platoon player who plays only against pitchers of the opposite hand.
a substitute who begins most games on the bench or only occasionally starts games to spell the regular starting player at his position. Sometimes these players are referred to as bench players or role players. They may also take on pinch hitting or pinch running assignments.
A common nickname for the New York Yankees due to its wealth and winning by far the most championships. This nickname is used especially by fans of the Boston Red Sox and by fans of other teams to a lesser extent. Even some Yankees fans have been known to call themselves and their team the "Evil Empire" as a badge of honor.
When a pitcher gets ahead in the count, he "expands the strike zone" because the hitter will be more likely to swing at a pitch that's at the edge or out of the strike zone or in some other location where he can't hit it. "Ideally, a pitcher is going to try and get ahead in the count and when this happens the pitcher has effectively "expanded the strike zone" since the batter is now on the defensive and will be more prone to chase pitches outside the strike zone".
When a batter is able to hit a pitch that's at a comfortable distance from his body, he's said to have "extended his arms". This may allow him to have a full swing and hit the ball hard. "J. D. Martinez has hit two homers in three career at-bats off Allen, who was trying to protect a 2-1 lead against the middle of Detroit's vaunted lineup. 'I was just overthrowing it', Allen said. 'I just didn't make pitches when I had to. One pitch -- J. D. Martinez got extended on a fastball and hit it very hard'".
Additional innings needed to determine a winner if a game is tied after the regulation number of innings (nine at the college/professional level, seven at high school level, six in Little League). Also known as bonus baseball or free baseball because paying spectators are witnessing more action than normal. It is sometimes, but not commonly, referred to as "overtime" as a play on other team sports.
When a team makes a mistake on a defensive play that ordinarily should lead to an easy out, the team is said to give its opponent an "extra out". "'There were a couple of innings where we gave them extra outs,' Wedge said. 'They may not be errors, but we're not making plays.'"