Definition of lowball in US English:



  • 1A ball pitched so as to pass over the plate below the level of the batter's knees.

    • ‘Ted was basically a dead lowball hitter when he came into the league and didn't hit the high fastball too well.’
    • ‘A dead lowball hitter with a loop in his swing, Lankford this season has been swinging at too many pitches up in the zone.’
    1. 1.1North American informal as modifier (of an estimate, bid, etc.) deceptively or unrealistically low.
      • ‘When it comes to the NFL, a six-year, $37.8 million deal with a signing bonus of $15.5 million somehow qualifies as a lowball offer when you compare it to some of the other monstrous contracts that have been signed in recent months.’
      • ‘This action helps purge lowball quotes or quotes that are mistakes, reducing the chance that facility executives will wind up with a contractor who cannot do the job correctly for the bid amount.’
      • ‘Sure, management traditionally says such defense mechanisms are designed to foil a lowball tender offer.’
      • ‘That year, the producers sadly underestimated WGA resolve and gave us a lowball offer, figuring we'd either grab it or that a strike would collapse quickly.’
      • ‘And despite the fact that even that number is obviously a lowball figure, he refuses to speculate further.’
      • ‘Seattle got a couple of lowball offers for Allen but never was close to dealing him.’
      • ‘Did he feel the $1.5 million annual salary was a lowball offer?’
      • ‘My father and I took a gamble and made a lowball offer - tens of thousands less than the original asking price - with the idea that I could afford monthly payments myself.’
      • ‘If you're one buyer who was reeled-in by a lowball price tag, you're probably experiencing regrets.’
      • ‘So much for phony lowball estimates, which all governments dangle to keep the rubes quiet.’
      • ‘I guess we should also be talking about the lowball quote.’
      • ‘When the campaign's lowball estimate of how much it can collect for a primary race without opposition is $170 million, you're looking at the greatest political fundraising machine since Louis XIV dined alone.’
      • ‘Are real estate agents encouraging lowball offers, because their take doesn't change much and they just want to make a deal?’
      • ‘As an expat American in the UK I get confronted with the lowball figures all the time.’
      • ‘He got on the phone recently to counter a lowball offer.’
      • ‘In this case, because of the lowball assessments favouring the developer, our experts says that the EIA was neither independent nor fair.’
      • ‘They became popular after a Delaware court found a board of directors negligent in 1985 for approving in two hours the sale of a company at a lowball price.’
      • ‘While the original offer was a lowball bid, she figures the new one may be enough to get edgy investors already worried about consolidation to cash out.’
      • ‘In June, they made lowball offers for the shares it doesn't own in each.’
      • ‘There are a lot more proteins than there are genes (a lot more, given the surprisingly lowball figure for the total size of the human genome), and the number of protein activities is several times larger than that.’


[with object]North American
  • Offer a deceptively or unrealistically low estimate, bid, etc. to.

    ‘are you being lowballed by someone who hopes to make money on extras later?’
    • ‘Compared to other deals that have been signed, the 49ers lowballed him with their contract offer.’
    • ‘Have a cash float with lots of change: A good garage saler will have plenty of change on hand to try and lowball you, but the rest of your customers probably have $20 bills in their pockets.’
    • ‘If they go for it, you don't have to worry that you'll be lowballing.’
    • ‘It was no surprise that other general managers lowballed him in trade talks.’
    • ‘As a result, it will be nearly impossible for investors to know if a company is lowballing, or to compare options costs among different companies.’
    • ‘Well if they are going to arbitration then the players obviously ‘felt’ they were being lowballed.’
    • ‘Let's lowball and say I worked eight hours each day.’
    • ‘They played up his love for Seattle and figured they could lowball him because of that love.’
    • ‘If I was lowballed severely like that, I'd hate the organization enough to leave once my contract is up.’
    • ‘Several property owners were lowballed, and court decisions increased their take.’
    • ‘Translation: the entrepreneurs figured they were getting lowballed and walked.’
    • ‘Sources close to Brown say he was lowballed when negotiations began, setting the table for what proved to be sour negotiations at times.’
    • ‘Well, basically, what they do is, they lowball you on the bid.’