A slang term in baseball for a pitch that hits the ground before it reaches home plate.
The distance from the pitcher’s mound to home plate is 60 feet—a 55-footer would therefore be well short of the catcher’s glove. Breaking balls, such as curveballs or sliders are the most common type of pitch to bounce off the dirt in front of home plate, as the angle or movement of the pitch is often intended to “break” downwards.
55-footer is sometimes used to refer to a wild pitch, but this is inaccurate, as a wild pitch infers that the pitcher has lost control of the ball. Most 55-footers do involve some loss of control, but are usually thrown as a result of putting too much break on the ball.