antedating? of "pinch hitter" (1899)

Sam Clements sclements at NEO.RR.COM
Fri Sep 5 03:18:14 UTC 2003

After consulting with Barry, I decided to post what I incidentally found at  I was searching for something completely different.  But you
just have to read those old newspapers.

MW has 1915 for "pinch-hit" and 1912 for "pinch hitter"
OED is totally out of the running on this one.

Dickson's BASEBALL DICTIONARY(the 1989 edition, ACCORDING to Barry) has 1907
for "pinch hit" and 1902 for "pinch hitter."  Perhaps his latest edition has

The earliest has is 1899.

September 4, 1899.  FORT WAYNE NEWS(INDIANA).  The page number is cut off.

                              "SPORTING NOTES"
  Letcher continues to be the best "pinch hitter" in the team, or in the
league, for that matter.

(I'm not sure if that means he was a substitute batter or came through in a


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