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ˈpinch-ˈhit How to pronounce pinch-hit (audio)
pinch-hit; pinch-hitting; pinch-hits

intransitive verb

: to act or serve in place of another
: to bat in the place of another player especially when a hit is particularly needed

pinch hit

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: a hit made by a pinch hitter

Examples of pinch-hit in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
David Peralta authored one of the most clutch moments of the season on April 15, when his pinch-hit, two-run single off Michael Fulmer in the bottom of the ninth lifted the Dodgers to a 2-1 walk-off win over the Chicago Cubs. Mike Digiovanna, Los Angeles Times, 4 Oct. 2023 Raley, who might have been pinch-hit for had Coulombe entered, capitalized on that decision and hit his 19th homer of the season. Jacob Calvin Meyer, Baltimore Sun, 14 Sep. 2023 Outfielder David Peralta, who left Sunday’s game in Washington after injuring his right wrist on one swing and getting hit in the left elbow by the next pitch, was available to pinch-hit Monday night and is expected to return to the lineup Tuesday night. Mike Digiovanna, Los Angeles Times, 12 Sep. 2023 Wong didn’t start Friday night because Atlanta Braves starter Max Fried is left-handed, although he pinch-hit in the eighth inning against right-handed reliever Pierce Johnson and hit a three-run home run that accounted for the Dodgers’ only offense. Steve Henson, Los Angeles Times, 2 Sep. 2023 The Tigers countered Barraclough's handedness by bringing Riley Greene, a left-handed hitter, off the bench to pinch-hit for Eric Haase. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, 12 Aug. 2023 An inning later, Jake Marisnick pinch-hit for Heyward. Scott Miller, New York Times, 12 Aug. 2023 The Reds are embracing changing roles Facing the Atlanta Braves on June 25, Bell made the bold decision to pinch-hit for Joey Votto. The Enquirer, 31 July 2023 Former governor Terry McAuliffe (D) stepped in to pinch-hit. Gregory S. Schneider, Washington Post, 20 July 2023
Haase, rather than Miguel Cabrera, pinch hit for Nick Maton. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, 26 July 2023 Two years ago, in the NLCS against the Braves, Roberts called on no-chancer Steven Souza Jr. to pinch hit in what amounted to the Dodgers’ final gasp. Dylan Hernández, Los Angeles Times, 1 Sep. 2023 He was assessed by training staff at first base, but remained in the game until the third inning, when Ramón Urías pinch hit and replaced him at first base. Hayes Gardner, Baltimore Sun, 13 Sep. 2023 Garcia was available to pinch hit, according to Bochy pregame, though his services weren’t called upon. Shawn McFarland, Dallas News, 20 Aug. 2023 Toronto third baseman Matt Chapman left in the sixth when Whit Merrifield pinch hit for him. Ian Harrison,, 27 Aug. 2023 Pinch hitter Ibáñez and Rogers flew out, sending in Miguel Cabrera to pinch hit. Jenna Malinowski, Detroit Free Press, 22 July 2023 For the second time this weekend Karissa Ornelas came in to pinch hit with the bases loaded and Oregon’s backup catcher, who entered the weekend hitting .226, including 1 for 7 in Pac-12 play, delivered yet again. oregonlive, 24 Apr. 2023 After two previous attempts at an MMA event in Utah fell short of expectations, shifting demographics and economics, plus a pinch hit from a new face with some juice wound up creating the perfect storm. Eric Walden, The Salt Lake Tribune, 26 July 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pinch-hit.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



back-formation from pinch hitter

First Known Use


1911, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1927, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of pinch-hit was in 1911

Dictionary Entries Near pinch-hit

Cite this Entry

“Pinch-hit.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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