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Related to go to bat for: go over, straight off the bat
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Still, Bowen's willingness to go to bat for low-income students is admirable, and he doesn't paper over the obstacles.
Then, when you have to say, "Look there's just no way we can do that--it won't work," people listen more, because they know that you will go to bat for them if the facts seem to be there.
We must go to bat for him because WE NEED HIM ON THE BENCH!