Since the 1800s, baseball players have been throwing like a girl, but even so… where did they all go?
Women don’t play baseball; they play softball. Have you heard that one before? Nuh-uh. Women have been playing right alongside men since the 1860s—although they did so at a distinct handicap. They wore heavy underclothes, floor-length skirts, buttoned shoes, and blouses with long sleeves and high necks. Whoa, Nellie.
Then came the carefree Bloomer Girls, wearing loose-fitting clothing, and barnstorming games across the nation. In 1931, one player, Jackie Mitchell, struck out Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth in an exhibition game. Now, we’ve got Little Leaguer Mo’ne Ikea Davis making the statement on the cover of Sports Illustrated. It’s okay to throw like a girl.
Photos courtesy of the California Historical Society