Submitted by mikesheehan on July 26, 2009

“on the day”

Normally, I would say “Williams had 4 singles for the day,” but many sportscasters use “ON the day” instead. Does anyone know the origin of this use? The editor of an online baseball encyclopedia had no idea, so I’m not sure where to go for an answer.

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I'm sorry that I have very little of substance to add, but I wanted to say that I too have noticed this. It is very commonplace in sports reporting/broadcasting.

There seems to be quite a lot of fluidity on the use of prepositions in English. In my experience, prepositions are one of the more difficult aspects of mastering many languages. Word-for-word translations often use the wrong preposition.

To my mind, "on the day" sounds slightly more formal than "for the day," but perhaps that is simply the context (a report, albeit a sports report) in which it is so often used.

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