１0 Common Sports Idioms for the ESL Class
To do an end run around
— American football; when a player goes around a teammate to score instead of passing the ball.
Idiomatic Meaning: To leave a key person out of a process.
To hit it out of the ballpark
— baseball; a ball that is hit out of the ballpark will allow everyone on base to score.
Idiomatic Meaning: to meet a goal more than was expected.
A slam dunk
— basketball. To score in one shot by evading blocking to shoot the ball through the hoop.
Idiomatic Meaning: to meet a goal easily and without opposition.
Out in left field
— baseball. Left field is “out,” where the game is not played and no scores made.
Idiomatic Meaning: A person who is out in left field makes off-topic or outlandish remarks, that don’t seem part of the “game.”
The home stretch
— baseball, the very last part of the game at the end of the ninth inning.
Idiomatic meaning: The “homestretch” of a project is the final phase.
To strike out
— baseball. A player who swings at a ball three times and does not hit it properly strikes out and must go to the end of the line.
Idiomatic Meaning: To strike out in a business deal is to fail after trying.
To not get to first base
— baseball. A player who strikes out cannot go to first base to attempt to score but must go to the end of the line.
Idiomatic Meaning: To try at a venture or project but fail to even complete the first stage.
A home run
— baseball. To run around the plates to home plate and score.
Idiomatic Meaning: a big success.
To pass the ball
— American football and basketball. To hand off the ball to a teammate rather than trying to score oneself.
Idiomatic Meaning: To give a task, usually undesirable, to a colleague.
To drop the ball
— American football. Accidentally dropping the ball allows the other team the possibility of scoring.
Idiomatic Meaning: To make a serious mistake, usually through inattention or carelessness, that affects a whole team or group.