Baseball lingo in M. Lewis' _Money Ball_; #3: "smoke"; reduplication; "jack"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Fri Nov 28 01:31:31 UTC 2003

>Latest installment:
>p. 36--for "jack" (= homerun)--'"in the past two years: 390 at
>bats;; 98 walks; 38 Ks.  Those numbers are better than _anyone's_ in
>minor league baseball.  Oh year, 21 jacks." Jacks are home runs.  So
>are dongs, bombs, and big flies.  Baseball people express their
>fondness for a thing by thinking up lots of different ways to say
>Gerald Cohen

That last one ("jack" for 'home run') I'd peg as a deverbal noun.
The more standard expression is based on the transitive verb: "to
jack it/one (out of the park)".  Seems to me I've also heard "he
really jacked it" for balls hit hard that didn't reach the stands.
To "smoke" someone is not always to leave someone in the dust in a
footrace, it can also be to throw a fastball by someone.


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