Timeline of Key Events
The Founding: 1990s-2007
Along with the new Olive Elementary School, the New Prairie Little League complex received substantial upgrades. Among the improvements, a
new tee ball field was constructed at the corner of Meridian and Ada Streets in New Carlisle.
Late 90s-Mid 00s
Wiffleball doubleheaders at the tee ball field were an everyday activity in the summer for a group of local kids. Games were 9 innings long and
featured heavily taped balls and bats.
The New Carlisle Wiffleball League was established. However, the league failed to last longer than a day.
With permission of the New Carlisle Police, a huge night game was organized at the Olive parking lot. After a blown save, the game went into extra
innings, with the final score of 23-22.
Jason Maitland and Koby Keck pitched the idea of a wiffleball tournament to the newly formed Hometown Days committee.
July 30, 2005
The inaugural Hometown Days Wiffleball Championship was held, attracting 16 teams from 3 states. Crafty veterans Matt Flagg and Jared Colanese led the Late Arrivers to victory in the double-elimination tournament.
Migley Field was constructed in New Carlisle. The park's name originated from Garrett Curless, who once called the tee ball field Migley
(mini-Wrigley). Pickup games were played often throughout the summer. In a last minute decision, the Finals of The Wiffleball Championship
are moved to Migley.
With interest in wiffleball growing, Jared Emmons and Koby Keck decided to start the Old Republic Wiffle Ball League during a conversation on AIM.
Emmons posted the declaration on his profile, and the league was born.
Chatter about the league reached incredible levels. A frustrated Mark Peterson, New Prairie's baseball coach, has to shut down wiffleball talk
during baseball practice.
Wiffleball's Golden Age: 2007-2008
June 3, 2007
The Newts hosted the Lil' Saints at Migley Field in the first ORWBL series. The Saints took game one, but the Newts won the next two.
Teams completed games sporadically, as the league's original schedule allowed five-day windows for teams to play a series.
June 12, 2007
The first night game in ORWBL history was played at Migley Field, as the Newts swept Cornhole. Night games became more common in 2008,
when the LaPorte Sox played home games at The Cell, the only field in league history with permanent lights.
June 22, 2007
The league hosted its first All-Star Game at Migley Field. The National League won, but the American League talked them into playing a best of
three series. The AL won the next two games and gained homefield advantage for the first ORWBL World Series.
As scheduled games continued to go un-played, the league held an emergency meeting. The owners decided to cancel the rest of the season and
start the postseason immediately. When some postseason series were not completed, the league failed to recognize any of the postseason.
AL Manager of the Year Marc Lindsey shocked the wiffleball world by leaving the Banana Slugs for a $3.24, three-year contract with the Newts.
The ORWBL standardized the playing style for the American and National Leagues, with five players, including a catcher, playing the field.
August 3, 2008
After an undefeated regular season, the LaPorte Sox win the first ORWBL World Series. The Sox won nine games on the field and 15 by forfeit.
Expansion Era: 2009-2010
The league expanded into South Bend, as the Bajer Beerfarts (known as Speedy's Chickenheads in The Wiffleball Championship) entered the league.
After their first season, the team changed their name to the Sour Wowers and went on to win consecutive championships in 2010-2011.
Upon their arrival to the league, Emery's Army released a flurry of YouTube videos. The attack promos were primarily directed at their division rivals
Newts and Marmosets.
June 28, 2009
With NCFD dropping out of the league mid-season, the league moved the Lil' Saints into the ORWBL West Division. The move put the Saints, who
were in third place in the Central at the time, in position to compete for the division title.
March 20, 2010
The Old Republic Wiffle Ball League became a member of the National Wiffle League Association.
June 27, 2010
LaPorte Sox ace Keith Ludwig tossed the first perfect game in league history against the LaPorte Bombers. The Sox swept the crosstown Bombers
in a six-game doubleheader ORWBL set.
July 28, 2010
After years of forfeits and unpaid league fees, Phat Dong was officially contracted. A ceremonial flag burning was held at Migley Field after Emery's
Army eliminated the Newts from the NLDS.
In order to be eligible for NWLA awards and recognition, the league officially made keeping statistics a requirement for all teams.
June 12, 2011
After the Minutemen failed to show up for its first three series, Alex Friedman purchased the franchise and fielded a team within a 24-hour span.
Now known as the Maple City Magic, the franchise has completely turned around. The league's forfeit problem also faded away.
Nick Arndt of the Federalists belted 110 home runs, destroying the previous record of 59 homers in a season. Offensive numbers across the
league were insane in the second season of stat-keeping.
August 1, 2012
The Sour Wowers dropped two of three to the Gangster Slugs and were eliminated from the postseason. The losses were the only two in the
postseason for the franchise, which racked up an incredible 17-2 postseason record. The franchise folded a few days later.
August 11, 2012
The Cult West Warriors won the ORWBL World Series in five games over the Gangster Slugs.
June 30, 2013
Scott Soos of the Warriors threw the second perfect game in league history in a 1-0 victory over Emery's Army.
August 18, 2013
In front of a sell-out crowd of 41 at Migley Field, the New Carlisle Newts broke the Curse of Chief Wahoo, defeating the Maple City Magic, 18-12, in
Game 6 of the ORWBL World Series to clinch their first championship.
August 17, 2014
The Newts went on the road and held off the Warriors, 8-7, in Game 6 of the ORWBL World Series to win back-to-back championships.
ORWBL expanded north of the border for the first time, as the Bertrand Bombers joined the league.
July 26, 2015
Three ORWBL teams advanced to the Hometown Cup Finals at The Wiffleball Championship. The Cult West Warriors defeated the Maple City Magic in the semifinals and the New Carlisle Newts in the championship game to clinch their third consecutive title.
August 16, 2015
In a Hometown Cup rematch, the Warriors defeated the Newts to claim the 2015 ORWBL Championship. It was the first ORWBL World Series to ever go the complete seven games.
The Next Generation: 2016-Present
January 1, 2016
Alex Friedman took office as the second ORWBL Commissioner in league history.
Over the offseason, the league was able to find 5 more teams and would operate under a 24 game regular season schedule. All 12 teams would advance to the playoffs. The league found a new team from the state of Michigan as the Great Lakes Godfathers led by Mark Haase were 1 of the 5 new additions.
For the. first time ever, the league used a twitter fan vote to select the "Last Man In" for both All Star teams. With the league returning to the regular AL-NL format, the All Star Game rivalry between the AL and NL renewed.
The National League defeated the American League for the 5th consecutive time and earned the rights for Home Field Advantage in the World Series.
After exiting the league, the Cult West Warriors core 4 signed with the New Carlisle Newts. The Newts would match up with the Maple City Magic in a rematch of the 2013 World Series. The loaded New Carlisle team was too much for Maple City to handle as they swept the Magic 4 games to 0 en route to the franchise's 3rd World Series Title which is the most of any franchise in ORWBL history.
The league office announced that the league would operate under a 30 game regular season schedule. Commissioner Friedman also made the decision to not have the All Star Game decide Home Field Advantage.
New to the league, the Granger Panthers made a statement quickly as they would go on to have a 25-5 regular season record which was good for tops in the league. We also saw the return of the beloved Emery's Army franchise after a 1 year hiatus from the league.
For the first time in league history, the All Star Game was played as a Best of 3 series. For the first time in 5 years, it was the American League who came out on top as they won the series (2-0).
The Cult West Warriors and Maple City Magic met up in the Hometown Cup Championship game in front of a record crowd of over 300 people. The fans were rewarded with one of the greatest Hometown Cup Championship games of all time as the Warriors were able to hold off a late Maple City comeback. This was their 4th Wiffleball Championship which have all been one in the previous 5 years.
For the 2nd straight season and 3rd time in 5 years, the New Carlisle Newts and Maple City Magic met up with the 2017 ORWBL World Series on the line. For 5 seasons, the Newts were able to dominate the series but things were different this time around. The Maple City Magic claimed their 1st ever ORWBL World Series Championship by taking down the Newts (4-1). The Magic became the 6th franchise in ORWBL history to win a World Series title after 7 years of rebuilding the Magic after Friedman purchased the Mill Creek Minutemen. This was the first time in 5 years that a team other than the Cult West Warriors or New Carlisle Newts claimed the World Series.
The league office announced that it would be returning to a 24 game regular season schedule for the upcoming season. As interest in wiffleball continues to soar, the league also announced that it would have 5 new expansion teams, bringing the total up to 14 which is the most teams the Old Republic Wiffleball League has has.
The National League got revenge on the American League after losing to the AL for the first time in 5 years in 2017.
The hometown team, New Carlisle Newts battled through one of the most competitive Hometown Days tourney's to date and brought the cup back home to New Carlisle. This was a monumental moment for long time Newts like Koby Keck and Garrett Curless who shared a special moment together after winning the Cup. New Carlisle is currently The Champions of Wiffleball (tournament).
After sweeping their way through the American League playoffs, the defending champions squared off against the young and super talented Granger Panthers. With the Panthers lacking any sort of depth, they were not able to hang with the Magic as injuries plagued the Panthers. This was the Panthers first World Series appearance in what was only their 2nd season in the league. Things look very bright for Granger. As for Maple City, they completed their quest at repeating as champions as they swept the Panthers 4 games to nothing. Despite losing Zach Liberatore (Law School) and 2017 World Series MVP, Anthony Rieff, Maple City had no championship hangover as their additions of Drew Luther and Shane Anderson proved to be worth the risk of bringing them back.
Heading into his 4th season, Commissioner Friedman announced the first ever Deputy Commissioner in league history. Friedman chose Aidan Cotter to be his right hand man. One can only assume that Cotter could be the next man in line once Friedman decides to retire as Commissioner.
Following the path of NBA Cares, ORWBL started our own ORWBL Cares where our players and teams participate in certain events to help out within the community. In our 1st initiative, we raised just over $1,000 in monetary donations for a local New Carlisle family who had lost their home to a house fire. Maple City's Drew Luther came up with the wonderful idea. There will be more ORWBL Cares events in the future as the first was a big success.
The NWLA released their end of season awards and ORWBL players represented well. Most notably, Alex Friedman won National Commissioner of the year which just goes to show you how team work and great communication within the league helped make that possible. Friedman stated that "None of this would be possible without all of the amazing managers, players, and teams, as well as Koby Keck and Jared Emmons for founding the league.= over a decade ago." The Maple City Magic also finished the season as the #3 overall ranked team in the country which is the best finish for an ORWBL team in NWLA history (10 years).
The league office announced that the league would be expanding to an all time high of 16 teams. Each team will play every team in their league as well as 1 inter league series throughout the course of the regular season.
After being voted on, the league implemented a new Designated Hitter option for teams to use if they choose to do so. Teams may also elect not to use a DH and of course can play without an EH as well.