Ballgame



any game played with a ball, especially baseball or softball.
Informal. a situation and all its attendant circumstances:
Having a new administration in power changes the entire ball game at city hall.
Compare new ball game.
Archaeology. a ceremonial game of both ritual and sporting significance, played by teams on a ball court in Mesoamerican cultures from the Preclassic period to the Spanish conquest.
Contemporary Examples

“The ballgame is a little different” in Pakistan, he continued.
Musharraf on Fixing Pakistan Michael Smerconish October 27, 2009

A couple of summers ago I sat with Zamperini at a ballgame at Fenway Park.
Dick Cheney vs. ‘Unbroken’ Mike Barnicle December 14, 2014

Met him on the D train going to Yankee Stadium one day and spent that afternoon watching a ballgame with him in the press box.
The Strange and Mysterious Death of Mrs. Jerry Lee Lewis Richard Ben Cramer January 10, 2014

Historical Examples

He said, “I have an undershirt on today,” it was at some ballgame.
Warren Commission (2 of 26): Hearings Vol. II (of 15) The President’s Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy

noun
any game played with a ball
(US & Canadian) a game of baseball
(informal) a situation; state of affairs (esp in the phrase a whole new ball game)

noun phrase

A given set of conditions; complex of circumstances; situation: What we do and what they do isn’t the same ball game (1960s+)
A competition; rivalry: It’s NBC ahead in the network ratings ball game, NBC says/ Goodbye, ball game, he said (late 1960s+)
The decisive element or event, esp in a competition or encounter; the NAME OF THE GAME: The third ward vote is the ball game in this town (late 1960s+)

Related Terms

that’s the ball game, a whole new ball game
see: whole new ballgame

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