Posted by Brian from Shawnee on May 21, 2005
In Reply to: Going for the downs posted by Bob on May 20, 2005
: : Does anyone know the origin of the phrase "Going for the downs" as used in baseball. A statement like "He was going for the downs with that swing" is common in the game and I know it's refering to trying to hit a home run or hit the ball hard, but I was curious where the phrase came from. Any help would be great. Thanks!
: I really doubt it's common. I've never heard it, and I've followed baseball closely for too many decades to mention. Maybe some quirky announcer somewhere?
I agree that it's not common, but it's not limited to a single announcer, either. It probably comes from the days when there might be "downs" (i.e., some more fields) outside a ballpark instead of a parking lot or an amusement park.
The phrase also scores numerous and varied hits on Google.