- 1a round object used for throwing, hitting, or kicking in games and sports a golf/tennis/soccer ball Bounce the ball and try to hit it over the net.
- 2a round object or an object that has been formed into a round shape The sun was a huge ball of fire low on the horizon. a ball of string Some animals roll themselves into a ball for protection.
- 3 a kick, hit, or throw of the ball in some sports He hit a foul ball.
- 4 (in baseball) a throw by the pitcher that is outside the strike zone (= the area between the batter's upper arms and knees)
- 5 ball of the foot/hand the part underneath the big toe or the thumb
- 6 a large formal party with dancing Idioms
- 1 to play with a ball Chris was in the park playing ball with the kids.
- 2(informal) to be willing to work with other people in a helpful way, especially so that someone can get what they want We contacted the airline about a refund but they wouldn't play ball.
nounjump to other results
a problem that prevents you from doing what you would like to do
a ball and chainjump to other results
it is your/someone's responsibility to take action next They've offered me the job, so the ball's in my court now.
the ball is in your/somebody's courtjump to other results
a person who is full of energy and enthusiasm
a ball of fire (informal)jump to other results
to take responsibility for getting something done My coworker was sick, so I had to carry the ball.
carry the ball (informal)jump to other results
to make a mistake and spoil something that you are responsible for Let's not drop the ball on this.
drop the ball (informal)jump to other results
to make something start happening; to make sure that something continues to happen
get/set/start/keep the ball rollingjump to other results
to enjoy yourself a lot
have a ball (informal)jump to other results
to be capable of doing a job very well; to be intelligent
have something/a lot on the ball (informal)jump to other results
to be aware of and understand what is happening and able to react quickly The new publicity manager is really on the ball.
(be) on the balljump to other results
to develop an idea or plan that already exists It's up to the private sector to take the ball and run with it. The mainstream media will pick up the ball and run with it. a challenge to other colleges to pick up the ball and run with it
pick up/take the ball and run with itjump to other results
play ball (with somebody)jump to other results
to stop giving your attention to what is most important
take your eye off the balljump to other results
the whole thing; everything I panicked, I cried—the whole ball of wax.
the whole ball of wax (informal)jump to other results