You must have asked yourself this question numerous times, especially if you got hit in the face by one of these. The name softball dates from 1926, but there is no clear explanation where the name comes from. Some say that the name originates from the first ball, intended for indoor play, that was bigger, softer and squishier. Since then, the ball hardened but the name stuck. Others say that the name comes from the method used to pitch and the fact that it is not wound as tightly as a baseball. But other than name, there’s really nothing soft about softball.