Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

Have you heard a lot of sports idioms used in English?

Does it feel as if there are a lot of different phrases that focus on sports?

These phrases and idioms may not have anything to do with the sport itself, but they have become a common part of conversation.

Today we’re going to look at baseball idioms, learn what they are and how to use them, as this is a great follow up to a previous episode where we began to talk about sports idioms.

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We have a great listener question that is likely something that you have wondered about yourself.

Hi girls,

I’m Juan Pablo from Colombia but you can call me Juanpis like everyone calls me. I’ve been listening to your podcast for two months, and it’s impressive to see how my listening skills have improved since then. Your podcast really helps and pays off in my speaking!

I’ve heard some sport idioms used on some of your shows, which I find to be very helpful. My professional career is focused on sports, and this is a big part of my life. I love sports and they are a part of my life, both personally and professionally. So I am wondering if you ladies can throw a few more sports idioms out there. It would help me to know a few more and to be able to use them in conversation too.

Thanks in advance, I just love you ladies and your show!

A Follow Up On A Common Topic

This is a great question, as it helps to take us into an area of conversation that is so common.

Sports idioms exist more in conversations than you might realize, and therefore you want to know how to use them.

Sometimes we do episodes focused on a topic and there is so much more to share.

This is a perfect example of that, so please feel free to always ask us for more of a topic that is of interest to you.

It’s hard to share all idioms of a category in one episode, so to know that you want more is really helpful for us in our planning.

This question is a great example of something that there is so much more to cover, and we are thrilled to answer such a question.

Today we are going to keep it super focused to one sport, just to make it more concise and helpful.

Here’s an episode that we did in the past which may be very helpful for you to check out first:

So recognizing that you may hear and use a lot of sports idioms, we’re going to focus on one sport.

Which sport are we choosing today?


Baseball is our theme for today, and you will learn some of the most common idioms around this beloved sport.

Baseball Idioms To Add To Your Conversation

Baseball is a very popular sport in America, and so as you can imagine there are a lot of idioms to talk about it.

This is a sport that has idioms that make it into conversation, and you might not even realize that it’s all centered around this favorite sport.

It’s possible that a couple of these may not be from baseball only, but these are thought to be baseball terms.

So since you are bound to hear these in conversation, let’s take a look at what some of the most common ones are that you may use as well.

  • Strikes: This is often used as chances with little kids, and it’s to help manage their behavior. You may hear parents give kids “3 strikes” and if they get to that, then there is often a consequence involved. You might hear “You already have two strikes today, so be careful or you won’t get to go to the party Sunday.”
  • Out of one’s league: This is like saying something is too far out of reach. It’s as if something or somebody is in a different category or beyond you. It’s not usually a positive as it is saying that something is not obtainable by you. This is often used when talking about looking for a romantic partner. You might say “She’s gorgeous, but she may be out of my league.” You could also use it in another way such as saying something like “That’s my dream job, but I don’t have the resume. I feel like it’s out of my league.”
  • Step up to the plate: This means that you should do something, be responsible for something when it needs to be completed. This is about accountability and basically saying that you should step up and follow through on something important. You might say “I never wanted to do sales, but my company needs it so it’s time I step up to the plate.”
  • Go to bat for: This means that you will assist or support someone or something. You will help them or be there for them in whatever way they need you to be. You might hear “I will always go to bat for my family.”

Roleplay To Help

In this roleplay, Michelle is Lindsay’s teammate on a class project.

Lindsay: “So can you finish your part by Thursday? The teacher is mad we have been late. She says we already have 2 strikes. “

Michelle: “Yes I will make sure it gets done. I know I need to finally step up to the plate.”

Lindsay: “It’s ok. If you have trouble, I will go to bat for you. I know you have had a lot of trouble with technology.”

Michelle: “Thanks. Do you think Harvard University is out of my league?”

Lindsay: “No! You can do it! Just get your work done on time!”


Sports are so popular in our language and culture, and so you may expect to hear about them often in conversation.

Baseball was the perfect example, as there are plenty of idioms that stem from this sport.

You want to know what they are and how to use them in conversation.

Always let us know what theme topics you want follow up episodes on, as this was the perfect example.

Learning how to use these idioms can be a great way to add to conversation, so this was a perfect example.

If you have any questions, please leave them below in the comments section.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

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