out in left field

Idioms & Phrases

out in left field

Also, out of left field. Eccentric, odd; also, mistaken. For example, The composer's use of dissonance in this symphony is way out in left field, or His answer was out of left field; he was totally wrong. This idiom refers to baseball's left field but the precise allusion is disputed. Among the theories proposed is that in some ballparks the left field wall is farther from the batter than the wall in right field. Another is that in early ballparks, left field was often larger than right field and therefore was home to more lost balls and general confusion. [Mid-1900s] Also see far out.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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