h Idioms

IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
The football game is almost over. The quarterback of the team is desperate. He tries at the last minute a very long pass, a Hail Mary pass.
Sentence 1
The Dallas quarterback tried a 50 yard pass, a Hail Mary pass, hoping he could tie up the game.
Meaning 2
A politician or say a business man or woman decides he is about to lose an election or an account and has a desperate strategy to get back "into the game," a Hail Mary pass.
Sentence 2
Many commentators and the electorate thought Mitt Romney's choice of Paul Ryan as candidate for vice-presidential spot on the 2012 Republcan ticket was a Hail Mary pass.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to start with an advantage, a head before the other runners
Sentence 1
They gave him a head start, because he was so little.
Meaning 2
to begin early
Sentence 2
We have a head start, because they faxed their contract to us and mailed it to the others.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to stay with something
Sentence 1
Hang in there. The sea is rough.
Meaning 2
to persist in doing something, to stay with something
Sentence 2
Hang in there. Staying on a low fat diet is no fun.

Derivation

The sailor, wind surfer, glider counterbalances the angle of the boat, surfboard, windsurfer by hanging out over the water.

IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
hang loose to relax
Sentence 1
Relax and hang loose as you ride the wave.
Meaning 2
to relax
Sentence 2
Hang loose about the boss' report. You're tense.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to reach base, without being called "out," after hitting a ball
Sentence 1
Joe DiMaggio had the longest hitting streak in baseball history, fifty-six consecutive hits, a total of 91 hits, in 1941.
Meaning 2
to do well, to be recognized for something by the public
Sentence 2
You have a hit with your new spring clothing line. Madonna has had many hit songs.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to throw a ball especially well, with a twist, curve, great speed
Sentence 1
The pitcher has something on the ball and struck out the batter.
Meaning 2
capable and skilled
Sentence 2
We should hire her. She has a lot on the ball.

Derivation

In baseball, the pitcher plays a more important role than in the English rounders from which baseball developed (The first baseball game was played in l847). By spinning the ball, usually by using saliva or spit, American pitchers could strike out batters easily. He was then said to "have something on the ball." The expression was soon used to mean anyone who is effective or skilled at what he does. In 1920 the "spitball" rule began. This stated that any pitcher putting any "foreign substance" on the ball would be suspended from playing.

IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
One's opponent has an illegal hand.
Sentence 1
I have the cards stacked against me. You've been cheating.
Meaning 2
to have a disadvantage
Sentence 2
The homeless have the cards stacked against them.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
He is next in the lineup to bat.
Sentence 1
There are two on (base) and Babe Ruth is up.
Meaning 2
He or she is next.
Sentence 2
You're up. They want you to speak next.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
a competitor in the strongest, heaviest division
Sentence 1
Joe Louis was a great heavyweight boxer.
Meaning 2
to be the most important
Sentence 2
International Business Machines is a heavyweight in the computer business.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to entangle a boat, raft or fishing line in something,such as a part of a tree, a plant, in the bottom of a stream or lake
Sentence 1
My fishing line has hit a snag at the bottom of a stream.
Meaning 2
to be temporarily stopped
Sentence 2
We've hit a snag in the arms accord talks.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to hit another boxer below the belt
Sentence 1
It is illegal to hit a boxer below the belt.
Meaning 2
to hurt someone unnecessarily
Sentence 2
He hit below the belt in that argument when he criticized her appearance.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to hit the bottom of a lake with a boat, a canoe or a fishing line
Sentence 1
We hit the bottom of the stream and had to push the canoe into high water.
Meaning 2
to be at the lowest or worst point
Sentence 2
The economy hit bottom in this fiscal quarter.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
the horse is running its fastest
Sentence 1
That horse hit its stride at the second turn.
Meaning 2
to do one's best
Sentence 2
He's finally hit his stride and is doing his job well.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
An ace is the highest card in each suit. To hold all the aces gives one a distinct advantage.
Sentence 1
They scored a grand slam in bridge last night. Her partner held all the aces.
Meaning 2
to have an advantage
Sentence 2
After the Second World War the United States held all the aces in developing a space program and advanced nuclear technology.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
Hunting dogs barking at game or prey until the hunter can arrive
Sentence 1
The dogs held the stag at bay until the hunters came.
Meaning 2
to keep something or someone stopped awhile until something else can be done
Sentence 2
They held the drug dealer at bay until the police could come.

Derivation

From a French medieval sports term, "abai", meaning to bark at game and hold it for the hunter.

IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to hit the golf ball into the hole with one stroke
Sentence 1
On the ninth hole he hit a hole in one.
Meaning 2
to succeed the first time
Sentence 2
He got a hole in one with that sale. He sold a house in ten minutes.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to play a game on a team's home field or court
Sentence 1
The Eagles have a home court advantage when they play football in Philadelphia.
Meaning 2
to have an advantage
Sentence 2
I had a home court advantage when they argued.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to hit the ball so hard that the batter can circle the bases and score a run
Sentence 1
Barry Bonds hit 70 home runs in 2001.
Meaning 2
to do something well to be a winner
Sentence 2
You scored a home run with that presentation. I think we'll get the contract.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to be caught on something
Sentence 1
The fish is hooked on my new lure.
Meaning 2
to be addicted to something
Sentence 2
The drug addict is hooked on heroin.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
to run hounds or dogs after something
Sentence 1
Slave owners hounded runaway slaves to try to bring them back. They considered slaves property.
Meaning 2
to urge continually
Sentence 2
Please don't hound me about getting the house painted. I'll do it when I can.
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
the offensive team gathers together and decides on the next play
Sentence 1
After the huddle, the quarterback threw a long pass to the tight end.
Meaning 2
to confer or go into conference to decide something
Sentence 2
Let's get the senior partners together and huddle to decide on the next move in this trial. (verb)
IDIOM ►
Meaning 1
The defensive line, usually seven men, tries to stay in its position against the opponent's offensive attack.
Sentence 1
The Los Angeles Rams held the line at the five yard line against the San Francisco Forty-Niner offensive attack.
Meaning 2
to stay and not move
Sentence 2
Hold the line on that offer. We are not going to pay any more.

Derivation

Hold the line is a military term for holding or staying in place under enemy offensive fire.