"be hit-and-run"

Charles Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Fri Jun 27 16:56:24 UTC 2008

And what would be the possible plurals of the baseballic noun "strike-'em-out-throw-'em-out"? (Or is the term "strike-him-out-throw-him-out"--with different antecedents of "him"?)


---- Original message ----
>Date: Fri, 27 Jun 2008 11:58:09 -0400
>From: Benjamin Zimmer <bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU>
>On Fri, Jun 27, 2008 at 11:18 AM, Arnold M. Zwicky
><zwicky at csli.stanford.edu> wrote:
>> the baseball use of "hit and run" is very often pluralized as "hits and run", as in "two hits and run scored".  fewer hits for "two hit and runs", even fewer for "two hits and runs", but both are attested.

>I wouldn't expect "two hits and run scored" to have anything to do with the baseball usage of "hit(-)and(-)run". (MW def: "a baseball play calling for a runner on first to begin running as a pitch is delivered and for the batter to attempt to hit the pitch".) It usually appears as "X had two hits and run scored", which is a terse way of saying that X had two hits and scored one run in a particular game. Likewise, I'd expect "two hits and runs" to refer distributively to >"two hits and two runs" rather than "two hit-and-run plays". "Two hit(-)and(-)runs", on the other hand, works just fine in the relevant sense, as in these online exx:
>"Two hit and runs late in the game were smoothly executed."
>"Neil gave me the sign for the two hit-and-runs and he told me to try to bunt."
>"Another player is hitting at home plate (two bunts, two hit and runs, 10 swings)."
>--Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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