or ball park
- a tract of land where ball games, especially baseball, are played.
- a baseball stadium.
- Informal. being an approximation, based on an educated guess: Give me a ballpark figure on our total expenses for next year.
- in the ballpark, Informal. within reasonable, acceptable, or expected limits: The price may go up another $10, but that's still in the ballpark.
Origin of ballpark
Related Words for in the ballparkviolent, unpleasant, harsh, almost, generally, roughly, relatively, virtually, approximately, practically, essentially, nearly, basically, about, around, most, closely, well-nigh, abrupt, imperfect
- US and Canadian a stadium used for baseball games
- approximate rangein the right ballpark
- (as modifier)a ballpark figure
- informal a situation; state of affairsit's a whole new ballpark for him
"baseball stadium," 1899, from (base)ball + park (n.). Figurative sense of "acceptable range of approximation" first recorded 1954, originally in the jargon of atomic weapons scientists, perhaps originally referring to area within which a missile was expected to return to earth; the reference is to broad but reasonably predictable dimensions.
The result, according to the author's estimate, is a stockpile equivalent to one billion tons of TNT. Assuming this estimate is "in the ball park," clearly there is valid reason for urging candor on the part of our government. [Ralph E. Lapp, "Atomic Candor," in "Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists," October 1954]
in the ballpark
Also, out of the ballpark. See under ballpark figure.