In its most basic form, the word “bullpen” refers to the physical location where the team’s relief pitchers warm up before entering the game. Typically, this area is a fenced section beyond the outfield fence, although occasionally it can be found in bad terrain below the outfield lines. Hence, this physical location has given its name to two related nouns over time. Through Metonimy – a figure of speech in which an object takes the name of something closely related to it – it has become the collective name of the team’s relief pitcher group (for example, the Yankees’ bullpen). In addition, since it most often occurs in the bullpen, the schedule that the throwing pitcher starts throwing during the initial pitcher or the rehab pitcher does as part of his rehabilitation is called bullpen.

As baseball fans, we always use the word “bullpen”. But how did the word in the rodeo get into the game more than the baseball diamond? Some speculate that this is in fact a reference to rodeos and dairy farms, suggesting that relief pitchers are like oxen ready to leave the field. Others say the Bull Durham tobacco advertisements adorned the early stadium, often in places where they relax. Casey Stengel infamously theorized that managers sent relivers away from the dugout because they were bored of “shooting the bull” before entering the game, while ESPN’s John Miller claimed the bull was kept in the pen just beyond. Fencing in the early days of polo grounds.

These are just some of the goal setting shareware that you can use. As any good classicist would say, however, when so many theories about the etymology of a word revolve around you, there is a good chance that none of them are correct. In fact, each theory probably represents a later attempt to interpret a word that does not even fit on the surface.

What do we know? Well, the first recorded use of the word “bullpen” in a baseball setting is dated May 7, 1877, when OP Keller made the following off-hand comment in a game recap. Cincinnati Inquirer:

The Cincinnati ground has lost the usefulness of a bull-pen with a ‘three for a quarter crowd’. Bleacher boards just north of the old pavilion now hold cheap crowds, which come at a discount at the end of the first inning.

As seen here, Bullpen was not originally a hot spot, but a place – given the small size of the 19th-century ballpark, probably next to the foul lines – where teams essentially sell “standing room only” tickets. . Later, when the concept of relief pitchers took root and they needed space to warm up, they transformed these parts into what you feel when you hear the word “bullpen”.

Now we have a Terminus ant cum For the term in baseball settings (latest possible date). But how did the Standing Room Only section get this name? To get an idea, we have to ask ourselves the question, “Where else was the word used in the late 19th century?”

The answer is in 1899 at Core d’Allen, Idaho. For over a decade, union miners had been frustrated by wage cuts, infiltration, and the frequent military occupation of moles, mines, appointed by management to spy on the union. Management and regular attempts to break the union. In 1899, tensions escalated, resulting in a dynamite attack on a non-union mining facility, several homes and offices were burned, and two murders took place. In response to the violence, Idaho Governor Frank Steinenberg sent troops and ordered mass, indiscriminate arrests of the male population in the region, regardless of whether they worked in the mines. The detainees were held in makeshift jails filled with haystacks and abandoned trains. This prison, known for its barbaric conditions that were to thwart subsequent consolidation efforts, was called “bullpen.”

At this point, we have two different contexts in which the word “bullpen” was used, and in fact, both have similarities: both examples describe the area used for a large group of people (the difference is, of course, one was a paying customer, the other Political prisoners were captured by the army). And there’s only one place in the 19th century where baseball and the Army overlapped: the Civil War.

In the early years of the Civil War, both the Union and the Confederacy engaged in prisoner exchanges that allowed prisoners of war to return to their families immediately after capture, primarily on the condition that they not return to the military. Get rid of them. This setup was designed to eliminate the need to keep a large number of POWs. However, the system collapsed in 1863, as the federation began to classify black soldiers as fugitive slaves who needed to be returned; The union refused to return prisoners until the South treated black soldiers equally.

The growing number of prisoners led to the erection of large prison camps, such as Camp Sumter in Andersonville, Georgia. The prison conditions, run by Confederate Commandant Henry Virz, were also appalling by the standards of the day. John E. Warren, a Union soldier who spent 162 days in Andersonville, wrote:

The prison pen, or bull pen, commonly called its inhabitants, had about twenty-four acres at this time, at least one-third of which was swampy, almost inaccessible, uninhabitable … At this time the pen could not be less than 30,000, and it was constantly growing.

Surprisingly, disease and starvation were rampant, and one-third of the 45,000 prisoners wounded in the camp did not leave. As a result, Virz became only one of two people executed for war crimes committed during the war, although it is a different story.

From here, we can speculate a bit about how “Bullpen” got into baseball. Chances are, most of the soldiers who fought in the war had some idea of ​​what a “bull pen” was, even if it was never actually near them. They would have brought this abusive word home in front of them, applied it in any situation in which there is a large crowd of people in a very small area.

It’s no less believable that sections marked for room just to stand at events could easily compare to Civil War prison camps – however, many children’s games, such as Capture the Flag, often use military and prison images. Over time, as the game of baseball needed more pitchers, and as its popularity grew, so did the need for more seating, only the section of the standing room was removed from the bulpen and then sent to the area where the bleachers were made. The name of the place, however, did not follow the fans, and eventually, the original use of the word was forgotten.