Definition of spitball in English:

spitball

Line breaks: spit|ball
Pronunciation: /ˈspɪtbɔːl
 
/
North American

noun

  • 1A piece of paper that has been chewed and shaped into a ball for use as a missile.
    More example sentences
    • Avoiding spitballs, paper airplanes, some desks and a couple of students, John made his way to the teacher's desk, where a rather round man was reading the newspaper.
    • At this, about a dozen spitballs and crumpled up paper wads made their way towards the girl, testament to the highly bored and volatile class.
    • They threatened him and threw paper spitballs at him.
  • 2 Baseball An unlawful pitch made with a ball moistened with saliva or sweat to make it move erratically.
    More example sentences
    • Gaylord Perry succored his Hall of Fame career by often calling upon an illegal spitball pitch.
    • He caught every type of pitch imaginable, some that are not legal today such as shine balls, spitballs and emery balls, from some of the greatest pitchers of his day.
    • After getting two strikes on Smith with his spitball, Grimes threw him a fastball, something Smith always handled well.

verb

[with object] informal Back to top  
  • Throw out (a suggestion) for discussion: I’m just spitballing a few ideas
    More example sentences
    • Though the film is derivative, the best anime usually is, spitballing liberally from American pop culture - TV's Cowboy Bebop is able proof.
    • So for someone who spent three years co-writing two series of Spaced in her own blood, sweat and tears, isn't the idea that you can spitball a 100-minute movie on the spot just a little galling?
    • How many of those parents would choose that if there was an alternative that actually did teach, oh I'm just spitballing here, science and math?

Derivatives

spitballer

noun
More example sentences
  • In the fifth inning of a tied 1920 game, New York Yankee spitballer Carl Mays faced Cleveland shortstop Ray Chapman, who was crowding the plate.
  • Maybe it's like how they licensed spitballers after banning it for new pitchers in the 1910s.
  • Wet spitballers used saliva, pine tar, tobacco juice, resin, mud, Vaseline, grease and the sweat of their brow.

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