Definition of screwball in English:


Syllabification: screw·ball
Pronunciation: /ˈskro͞oˌbôl
chiefly North American


  • 1 Baseball A pitched ball that moves in a direction opposite to that of a curveball.
    More example sentences
    • You'll learn the rules of offense and defense, and all about fastballs, curveballs, knuckleballs and screwballs.
    • The batters had to wait, watch for the spin and break of the screwball.
    • ‘The third strike on every one of them,’ Hubbell once recalled, ‘was a screwball.’
  • 2 informal A crazy or eccentric person.
    More example sentences
    • Even scarier is the prospect of this party coming to anything with the screwballs they have in their ranks.
    • By the end of that campaign, he still got 20% of the vote, but apparently some people just like a screwball.
    • ‘You guys are a bunch of screwballs!’ the girl said and stomped out of the shop.


informal Back to top  
  • 1Crazy; absurd.
    More example sentences
    • A Service Pilot in one of my flights north had reported to Operations that I was a crazy, screwball pilot and that he was scared to fly along side me.
    • Usually this happens when they say something in a very haughty tone that doesn't make any sense, as though I should have anticipated their screwball question.
    • However, the question remains: with all these goofy and screwball side effects, how in the heck did it slip by the radar of the FDA?
  • 1.1Relating to or denoting a style of fast-moving comedy film involving eccentric characters or ridiculous situations.
    More example sentences
    • Whether it's action films or screwball comedies, most Hollywood movies focus on beautiful young characters.
    • An opportunity to create a classic, timeless satire was squandered by going for a cheap attempt to soften the film into a screwball comedy.
    • The actor gets to play two characters in this outrageous little comedy, a sort of screwball gangster film.



More example sentences
  • He used unorthodox moves to shake things up, like pinch-hitting left-handed hitting John Milner against southpaw screwballer Tug McGraw.

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