scrape the barrel

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Related to Scraping the Barrel: scraping the bottom of the barrel

scrape the barrel

To use or select from the last or worst of the resources or options from a particular range or set, even if they are not satisfactory, because there are no others to choose from. We used to get hundreds of qualified candidates, but lately I feel like we've been scraping the barrel with the applicants we bring in. A: "These were the best you could get?" B: "Sorry, the selection was already picked through, so I really had to scrape the barrel even to find those."
See also: barrel, scrape

scrape the barrel (or the bottom of the barrel)

be reduced to using things or people of the poorest quality because there is nothing else available. informal
See also: barrel, scrape

scrape (the bottom of) the ˈbarrel

(disapproving) use things or people of a low quality because all the good ones have already been used: TV is terrible at the moment, it’s nothing but old movies. They’re really scraping the barrel, aren’t they?
See also: barrel, scrape
References in periodicals archive ?
The Killie boss said: "We are scraping the barrel in terms of personnel but when that happens to a team they can sometimes get a result.
The whole article was scraping the barrel for sensationalism.
We think they were scraping the barrel and found a soft target.
The turning lock isn't fantastic, but I was really scraping the barrel to find anything else - and didn't.
With reality shows and bloomer specials such as Paul O'Grady's BBC effort and Camera,Action Accident on C5, programme-makers are scraping the barrel.
Arsenal are scraping the barrel, but they are a big loser in our book, otherwise United would be clear favourites," explained John Bayliss.
It's scraping the barrel and I don't care if it is for charity, it doesn't make civilised proper or appropriate viewing.
I think Channel 4 must be scraping the barrel a little to make up their top 10 of TV male tottie.
Camelot are really scraping the barrel on this one.
Unlike Chelsea, who can bring in another multi-million pound Italian, or Manchester United, who can call in a Scholes or a Butt, Arsenal are left scraping the barrel after two or three injuries or suspensions.
Whilst it is good news that the penny has dropped that two sites were never the solution, it now looks as if the council is still scraping the barrel for another alternative.
The attacks are unfounded and rather desperate attacks on our members and they are really scraping the barrel.
And looking at the gang they've gathered here, the Beeb really has been scraping the barrel.
But Sammy McIlroy, scraping the barrel after late withdrawals by Neil Lennon and Ian Nolan, has made it clear his days as Mr Nice Guy are limited.
LONDON really must be scraping the barrel to come up with the rare newt argument to stop the new national stadium being located in the West Midlands.