heavy hitter

noun
1.
a baseball player who makes many extra-base hits.
2.
a very important or influential person: the secretary of state and other heavy hitters.

Origin:
1975–80

heavy-hitter, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
heavy hitter
 
n
informal another term for big hitter

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon
Main Entry:  heavy hitter1
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  See big hitter
Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014 Dictionary.com, LLC
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

heavy hitter

An important or influential individual or organization. For example, This publishing house is one of the heavy hitters in the textbook industry. This expression originated in sports such as boxing, where it literally meant "hitting hard," and was transferred to other enterprises in the mid-1900s.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
And one reason salmonella may be such a heavy hitter is that it actually hijacks our immune response for its own benefit.
If you are a heavy hitter, your car may be booted at any time, even if you are parked legally.
It's a true story and the kind of uplifting heavy hitter that seems tailor-made for ceremonial recognition.
Hydrogen may be the lightest element, but it's a heavy hitter when it comes to clean energy.
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