Talk:Left fielder

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"Out of Left Field" etymology[edit]

Look, I'm all for idioms with cute etymologies when they're true, the problem is 90% of the time they're just folk tales someone made up to fit the phrase. The "source" for the phrase "out of left field" currently on the page seems a little too fanciful and involved to be true. Plus, the article English language idioms derived from baseball says the phrase "out of left field" is debated, and gives another equally-implausible sounding Babe Ruth story. As best as I can tell, it's just one of those everyday expressions of debatable origin that we'll probably never figure out, so there's no use stating a local college rumor as fact here. Thoughts? '''atomicRED''' (talk) 05:40, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

For what it's worth, I'm relatively certain that this has to do with "Death Valley" in Yankee Stadium circa 1923-1976. During this time period, the shape of the outfield in Yankee Stadium roughly approximated an oval, with the "long" portion pointing to left-center. A left-fielder would thus typically be stationed further back from the action than the center or right fielders, as he would have a greater amount of ground to cover. Hence, "out in left field" meant one was furthest from the action at home-plate, and hence (with a pinch of figurative whimsy) the most likely to draw erroneous, nutjob conclusions. The Babe Ruth story is fucking bullocks. Nobody - nobody - goes to a ballgame to watch a player play in the outfield, especially not a player like the Bambino, whose skill with the stick far surpassed his speed and grace with the glove. I don't care how many published books cite it, it doesn't make it any less bullocks. Badger Drink (talk) 10:02, 26 April 2010 (UTC)