Bowling Glossary

 
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z ALL
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MAKEABLE SPLIT
A split that isn't terribly difficult to convert, though it may not exactly be easy.
MAPLE
The hard wood used for the head portion of the lanes (foul line to arrows); see also "pine", "splice", and "dovetails".
MAPLES
The pins, because that's the wood they used to be made from.
MARK
A strike or spare; a person that is vulnerable to losing money in a match; your target on the lanes.
MARSHMALLOW
A soft hitting ball; ineffective ball.
MASS BIAS
Mass bias in a bowling ball occurs when the weight block or portion of weight block is more dominant in one direction inside of a bowling ball.
MATCH
3, 5, or 10 strings (per player) game between opponents.
MATCH PLAY
A kind of competition in which two bowlers compete against one another, rather than against the field as a whole. Typically, the winner of a match advances to the next round for another match.
MEDAL PLAY
Only total pins count. Most local events, city and association tournaments for example, are medal play or medal play with handicap.
MEDIC
Called out when a solid corner or 5-pin is left. Sarcastically calling for a doctor because the bowler hit the ball "so hard" there must be blood on their fingers; or alternatively, that the ball is near death (five pin) and needs assistance.
MELINDA
A phrase sweeping its way through England at the moment is the 'Melinda' call when you get a messenger or a lot of pin action. So named after the large chested model Melinda Messenger.
MESSENGER
The name given to the pin that rolls across the pindeck into a pin or pins to either get a strike or break up a split.
MINUS
In competitive play, the amount of pins (including bonus, if any) that a player is scoring under a 200 average; a player that shoots 1534 for 8 games is "minus" 66. See also "plus", "over" and "under".
MISS
An error; a blow; usually does not refer to an unmade split.
MISTER 900
Usually refers to Glenn Allison; he had the first 900 series before the SoB; it was rejected as not being in compliance with the lane conditioning rules at the time (although most experts acknowledge that it would be entirely legal today).
MIXED DOUBLES
A two person team competition in which one is male and the other female.
MIXER
A light pocket hit that scatters the pins resulting in a strike. A ball with a lot of action.
MOAT
The gutter.
MOJAVE DESERT
Very dry lane condition; "arid".
MORPHED
When a pin moves across the deck and does not fall, perhaps changing from an easy spare to a much harder spare.
MOTHER-IN-LAW
Usually the 7-pin, because it's often the pin that remains standing to spoil what looked like a good strike hit; sometimes synonymous with barmaid.
MOVE IN
To adjust your approach farther towards the center of the lane; towards higher numbered boards.
MOVE OUT
To adjust your approach farther towards the edge of the lane; towards lower numbered boards.
MR. (OR MRS.) AVERAGE
Facetious name for a bowler who doesn't show up, since his or her average is often used to compute team scoring. See also blind.
MULE EARS
Same as bedposts.
MULTILINGUAL
When a player is able to score well from a variety of lines/angles.
MURPHY
Same as baby split.

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