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Captioning word of the month: .500

Steve Clark

Below is the fourth in a series of monthly featured words to help captioners build their dictionaries and knowledge. The words for this series are being provided by Steve Clark, CRC, a captioner from Washington, D.C. Clark captions for Home Team Captions and covers the Baltimore Ravens NFL team  and the Washington Nationals baseball team. Clark also co-chairs NCRA’s Broadcast and CART Captioning Committee.

Our term this month, .500, comes from practically every sport. While this is a pretty straightforward term and an easy definition, the added definition of 1.000 usually trips us up. The definition of 1.000 is included at the end.


(baseball, NASCAR, basketball)


Having the same number in both one category and its opposite category; for example, having the same number of wins as losses.  A team that has won six games and lost six games has a .500 record.  A basketball player who has shot the ball four times and made two of those shots is shooting .500.


“After a very shaky start, this team shows promise and is now playing .500 ball.”

“Rodriguez has been up to bat 10 times in his career against this pitcher, hitting the ball five times.  If you can hit .500 against this guy, you’re doing all right, I’d say.”

“Johnson has tried to pass Gordon on that outside lap twice and succeeded once.  You could say this racer is sitting at .500, I guess.”


This is heard quite often in baseball, as in “He’s batting 1.000.”  This is often spoken as “he’s batting a thousand.”  For clarity when captioning, I tend to write “he’s batting 1.000” even when spoken as “he’s batting a thousand.”   This is one of those terms that has become a part of our everyday jargon, meaning someone has been perfect at something.