go yard (1988)

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Oct 17 00:27:11 UTC 2005

At 6:31 PM -0400 10/16/05, Benjamin Zimmer wrote:
>On Sun, 16 Oct 2005 17:30:02 -0400, Chris Frazier wrote:
>>I've still never seen or heard the phrase used. And 18,000 Google hits
>>doesn't necessaily make it so.
>I hear it often enough from TV commentators (on ESPN and Fox). Seems to
>have gotten popular in the early '90s-- here are two more early cites (the
>parenthetical glosses suggest the expression was still new):
>1992 _Post Standard_ (Syracuse, NY) 10 Aug. D5/5 "Knowing he can go yard
>(hit one out), you have to make a good pitch," Leiter said.
>1993 _Atlanta Journal-Constitution_ 1 Apr. G1 (Nexis) "Pressure's on the
>pitcher," somebody hollered. "He's getting nervous." Several teammates
>yelled encouragement. Another chimed in, "She's going yard [home run]."
I don't think there's any substantive disagreement here.  It hasn't
been widely extant until relatively recently (10-15 years ago), so it
wouldn't have shown up in earlier discussions, and its use has been
largely popularized, if I'm not mistaken, by ESPN SportsCenter.  The
more formal writers and sportscasters like Roger Angell or Vin Scully
no doubt would steer clear of it, but over the last several years
it's become a mainstay of highlight shows, demotic sportscasters
(Chris Berman, perhaps?), players, and no doubt sports bloggers and
such, whence the googlit count.  Note the glosses on the early cites;
this would no longer be needed now.


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