If you are like my family, the 4th of July means being with family, enjoying the sun with a cold beer in your hand, and playing the family friendly version of Wiffle ball that most of us know and love. If you are looking for the fast pitch style with the big barrel bats, lookup Palisades or GoldenStick Wiffle Ball Leagues. 4th of July Wiffs is all about "FUN" so leave the $200 bat and scuffed balls at home. With that being said, here are some rules to use for your 4th of July Wiffle games.
1. Fourth of July Wiffle ball games do not have a schedule or set # of innings until it's determined how many people are playing. If there are more than 6 people, play some 6 inning games, with 3 people per team. If there are not enough people to call "winners" then just mix up the teams.
2. Get as many games in on one day as possible. The average Wiffle player has the athletic ability to play 10 games in one day, but the following morning, may not be able to get out of bed.
3.Get your ground rules straight. Explain what part of the house is fair or foul, what bush marks the doubles line, and what the rule is for the ball that is bounces off the dog in foul territory and then hits the tree being used as the foul pole.
4. Forget base running, it's not needed and will only tire out those in peak Wiffle athletic form faster. The idea is to enjoy the game and be as lazy as possible while enjoying it. Base running means having to have an official, and the best Wiffle games have no umpire. Keep it simple. Hit the ball and walk away. If you happen to hit a moonshot, a bat flip and trot around the bases to embarrass the pitcher is fully encouraged. When it comes to enjoying the game while being as lazy as possible, a very effective defense on the infield is simply laying down.
5. Wiffle ball is a rain or shine sport. The winds can play havoc on a pitcher, or cause a homerun to become an infield flyball. Deal with it.
6. Having your beer in hand or on the field of play is expected. Just know that if your beer is knocked over, you will be ridiculed by opponents and your own teammates.
7. Have a "Rooster Rule". Use a landmark between the batter and the pitcher, like a statue of a rooster, to determine when a ball is in play or a foul ball.
8. If you bunt in Wiffle ball, you will receive the "Pete Rose" and be banned for life. No appeal will ever be heard.
9. Have a strike zone. It can be a pitch back, the popular beach chair, a piece of plywood, or an official zone from league or tournament. That moment when you are on the mound and get the batter looking for the 3rd out of an inning, earns a walk off like Conor McGregor after knocking someone out.
10. If you are the batter and are caught looking to strike out with the bases loaded, be prepared for the insults to end only after you win a game on a walk off home run.
11. When you are in the field and a batter swings and misses, it is mandatory to thank him for the breeze he just created.
12. Giving up a home run is more than enough justification to throw at the next batter's head.
13. Set a number of balls for walks. There is always that one guy who will simply throw slop to the big hitter until he gets frustrated and swings at the ball 10 over his head.
14. If you are throwing the ball hard, you're playing the wrong game. Go play in a league, give up 10 homeruns and then come back to the family game. Slow it down Baby Nolan...
15. Only play with the official WIFFLE balls and yellow Wiffle bats. Playing with anything else is not Wiffle, it's a toddler game.
16. Don't scuff up the ball or tape the barrels of the bats. Brand new, right out the box, no modifications if the proper way to play. If you need to take a steak knife to ball to make it curve, then you can't throw a curve.
17. Rotate the pitchers. Everyone on the team has to pitch. Yes, even grandpa. His knuckle balls and Eephus pitches will drive you insane.
18. If you bring any type of glove to a Wiffle game, batting or fielding, the "Pete Rose" will apply. (Read rule #8 for clarification)
19. If a man happens to be hit in the private area, you can laugh. People have won thousands of dollars on videos of men being hit in the groin by that piece of plastic. It's funny, and they will walk it off soon enough.
20. The most important rule of Wiffle: Have fun. It's not a serious game, it's a plastic bat and ball. No matter how bad the Phillies are, they still won't sign you to a deal because you went 19-20 on the day with 12 home runs.
To celebrate the 4th of July, we will have a reduced price on our entry fee for the 5th Annual Wiffle Fall Classic. Sign your teams up today. The sale ends July 5. We hope to see you on Saturday, September 23, 2017.