Why Is It Called A Bullpen In Baseball?

Baseball is a beloved sport among many people all around the world. But have you ever wondered why that area where the pitchers are located is called a ‘bullpen’?

In baseball, the term ‘bullpen’ has been used since the late 19th century. It’s an area of the field in which pitchers warm up and then enter to briefly relieve a starter pitcher. So why is it called the bullpen?

Keep reading to find out the history and origin of the term ‘bullpen’ in the sport.

Why is it Called a Bullpen in Baseball?

Baseball players, coaches and fans often refer to a certain area on the baseball diamond as the “Bullpen”.

But why is it called a Bullpen in baseball?

History of Baseball Bullpens

The term “Bullpen” originally referred to an area in front of the home team’s dugout at the Polo Grounds in New York City. A “Bullpen” was the biggest, most important area near the home team’s dugout.

In the late 19th century, teams used the “Bullpen” as a warm-up area for pitchers, where they could practice throwing against a wooden backstop with the added benefit of a background of fans.

How Was the Term “Bullpen” Coined?

The term “Bullpen” is thought to have been coined by baseball pioneer Tim Murnane. Around 1883, Murnane wrote an article in which he referred to the bullpen as a “cattle pen apart”, which was obviously an analogy to the bull pens of cattle yards, where cattle were kept before being slaughtered.

Modern Baseball Bullpens

In modern times, the term “Bullpen” is still used to describe the area located in the outfield, behind the pitcher’s mound and the dugout.

This is where pitchers warm up in preparation for their appearances. It is also a common area for teams to house their extra pitchers.


The term “Bullpen” has been used for a long time in the game of baseball and it is still used today to describe the area located in the outfield that is mainly used for pitchers to warm up and get ready for their playing time.

Citation URL: https://www. baseballhistorydaily.

com/2013/10/why-is-it-called-a-bullpen-in-baseball/ https://www. si. com/mlb/2017/02/08/baseball-bullpen-origins-meaning https://www. thoughtco. com/bullpen-definition-in-baseball-3129694

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