foul line


Definition of foul line 

1 : either of two straight lines extending from the rear corner of home plate through the outer corners of first and third base respectively and prolonged to the boundary of a baseball field

2 : a line across a bowling alley that a player must not step over when delivering the ball

3 : either of two lines on a basketball court parallel to and 15 feet from the backboards behind which a player must stand while shooting a free throw

Examples of foul line in a Sentence

The ball landed just inside the right-field foul line.

Recent Examples on the Web

Late in the fourth quarter of the Suns’ 71-53 Summer League win over the Magic on Monday, Phoenix forward Jack Cooley stepped to the foul line for a pair of free throw attempts. Staff,, "Weekend Read: Meet the 'Adopted Son' of NBA Summer League, Astroball's Release and More," 13 July 2018 Benjamin Robson Observations ▪ The 49ers were outstanding from the foul line, hitting 21 of 22 shots. Steve Lyttle, charlotteobserver, "It wasn’t the Charlotte 49ers’ defense that cost them against Western Kentucky," 13 Jan. 2018 Gotta get to the foul line; gotta make more free throws. Sam Mcdowell, star-telegram, "OT Thriller: Buzzer-beater in regulation not enough for TCU in Big 12 Tournament | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 8 Mar. 2018 Dass dribbled a grounder down the foul line, only for the catcher to fumble the ball. Sam Dodge,, "Newport Beach PONY All-Stars advance to sectional championship," 8 July 2018 With two outs in the first, Santana hit a high pop fly that fell just inside the left-field foul line for what should have been a double. Bob Brookover,, "Slumping Phillies irritate Jake Arrieta | Extra Innings," 4 June 2018 Cambage then scored the next seven points, including going 5 for 5 from the foul line to give the Wings a cushion. Seattle Times Staff, The Seattle Times, "Storm’s five-game winning streak ends in loss at Dallas," 2 June 2018 Several of them still shot with two hands from the field and underhanded from the foul line. Frank Fitzpatrick,, "The 'contest' that won the 76ers their name | Frank's Place," 11 May 2018 Vujačić also shot 80 percent from the foul line while averaging 2.6 rebounds, 2.1 steals and 1.7 assists per game. Jonas Shaffer,, "Maryland women sign junior-college All-American guard Sara Vujačić," 18 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'foul line.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of foul line

1870, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for foul line

Last Updated

20 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for foul line

The first known use of foul line was in 1870

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More Definitions for foul line

foul line


English Language Learners Definition of foul line

baseball : either one of two straight lines that go from home plate through first and third base on to the edge of the outfield

basketball : a line from which a player shoots free throws

foul line


Kids Definition of foul line

: either of two straight lines running from the rear corner of home plate through first and third base to the boundary of a baseball field

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to deposit or conceal in a hiding place

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