Here in the heydays of overlapping baseball, football, hockey and soon to be basketball, we here at FTC are pleased to announce a new seasonal feature: celebrating the mixed sports metaphor, reference or trope.
Out of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, we have Bud Shaw writing:
Wonder why the Browns didn't look prepared to open the season? Why they rank last or next to last in critical offensive categories? Why the lone touchdown score came -- like an uncontested steal of second base -- with the Minnesota Vikings lulled into late-game defensive indifference.
A fairly good crossover, I think. Good syntax, effective description; doesn't come across as highly irrelevant.
This one from Yahoo! Sports baseball favorite, Tim Brown, is on the other side of the spectrum:
Not only would there be less talk about the hex, there’d be a lot less talk about all those fallow innings, and the overanxious at-bats, and the whiffed squeezes, and the shaky defense, and the three-games-and-outs.
Clearly he's borrowing from football with that last clause. Terribly awkward results. Doesn't help me understand the situation any better than if he hadn't made the reference, and if anything, it junks up the phrasing. Try saying "three-games-and-outs" out loud. It doesn't feel good on the tongue or on the brain.
If anyone can find Cliff Lee's interview after yesterday's game, pass it along. I remember him saying something about his only goal was "to get my offense back on the field." Not sure he intended it as a mixed reference, but for the sake of splitting hairs, I think we can all agree that in baseball we get the offense back up to bat, or back to the plate, or back on base-- not on the field. Someone find me the actual quote, I'll make a big deal out of it!