pinch-hit • v. [intr.] Baseball bat in place of another player, typically at a critical point in the game: he pinch-hit for O'Brien and hit a grounder. ∎ (of a team manager or coach) assign a player to pinch-hit in place of another: when National League managers pinch-hit for the pitcher. ∎ inf. act as a substitute for someone, esp. in an emergency: last year I briefly pinch-hit for a movie critic on leave.DERIVATIVES: pinch hit·ter n.