ˈtȯs-ˌəp How to pronounce toss-up (audio)
: something that offers no clear basis for choice
: an even chance

Examples of toss-up in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Of the 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives, 69 are running in November races that are rated as toss-ups, competitive or potentially vulnerable by the nonpartisan Cook Political Report, which has tracked House and Senate races for decades. Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times, 8 Apr. 2024 In fact, North Carolina and Arizona are the only places where Trump’s numbers are outside of the gray area, while Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin remain plausible toss-ups. Philip Elliott, TIME, 5 Apr. 2024 The primary sets up a faceoff in November against Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown that many see as a toss-up. Elizabeth Robinson, NBC News, 19 Mar. 2024 But this particular outcome remained a toss-up, to those watching, until those final-hour negotiations the day before the announcement. Kayla Dwyer, The Indianapolis Star, 15 Mar. 2024 Who will win the toss-up battle for a congressional seat in the Central Valley? David Lightman, Sacramento Bee, 6 Mar. 2024 Only 10 California races are considered somewhat competitive, but just four are considered true toss-ups — those held by Republicans Ken Calvert, Mike Garcia, David Valadao and John Duarte. John Woolfolk, The Mercury News, 6 Mar. 2024 Three of the races—in Ohio, Montana and Arizona—are rated toss-ups by Cook Political Report, and another four in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Nevada lean Democratic. Sara Dorn, Forbes, 1 Mar. 2024 There are now three toss-up Senate districts bordering Milwaukee, which will stretch as far as Port Washington to the north, Pewaukee to the West, and Franklin and Caledonia to the south. Journal Sentinel, 1 Mar. 2024

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

Word History

First Known Use

1812, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of toss-up was in 1812

Dictionary Entries Near toss-up

Cite this Entry

“Toss-up.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


: something that offers no clear choice
it's a toss-up who will win

More from Merriam-Webster on toss-up

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