Ever Wonder How Wiffle Ball Started? Here’s Your Answer!
Last weekend, my daughter stopped by to visit and my grandson, Jack, found an old plastic baseball which he, in the Dorsey tradition, threw it at me. It got me to thinking about how a plastic ball could be so popular when I was his age. Who came up with this invention?
The year was 1953 in Fairfield, Connecticut, when a guy by the name of David Mullany Sr. developed a plastic baseball with holes in it which made the ball curve when it was thrown. He invented it on August 14, 1953 for his 13-year-old son and it became known as the “Whiffle Ball.” Its name came from the common phrase of striking out being known as a “whiff.”
The whiffle ball became extremely popular in the 50s and 60s, and has seen a resurgence of interest lately with whiffle ball leagues popping up around the country. I grew up in the whiffle ball era, and even cut my family’s backyard grass to form a baseball field for my brother and I along with our friends to play whiffle ball during the summer.
I trust there isn’t a kid out there that hasn’t played with a whiffle ball at least one time in his or her lifetime. One thing for sure, it doesn’t break windows like a real ball does.