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[fuhng-goh] /ˈfʌŋ goʊ/
noun, plural fungoes. Baseball.
(in practice sessions) a ball tossed into the air by the batter and struck as it comes down.
a batted ball, especially a fly ball, hit in this manner.
Also called fungo bat. a bat used in hitting fungoes, being lighter, longer, and narrower than an ordinary baseball bat.
1865-70, Americanism; of obscure origin Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Word Origin and History for fungo bat
1867, baseball slang, perhaps from dial. fonge "catch," a relic of O.E. fon "seize" (see fang), or possibly from the Ger. cognate fangen. Not in OED 2nd ed. (1989).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for fungo bat


  1. A ball hit to give practice to fielders, usually by tossing it up and swinging
  2. (or fungo stick) A long, light bat used to hit practice balls to fielders

: They used to fungo that ball over your head

[1867+ Baseball; origin unknown; perhaps fr dialect fonge, ''catch,'' fr Old English fon, ''seize, catch,'' or fr the German cognate fangen, in the same sense; the -o ending might indicate a shouted warning, the whole meaning ''Now catch!''; Paul Dickson, the baseball lexicographer, describes five theories of origin]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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