Definition of screwball in English:


Line breaks: screw|ball
Pronunciation: /ˈskruːbɔːl
chiefly North American


1 Baseball A ball pitched with reverse spin as compared to a curve ball.
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: she was dating a real screwball
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: what possessed you to ask a screwball question like that?
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  • 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: a screwball comedy in which two different couples find themselves sharing a house
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.



sense 1 of the noun.
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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