In 1977, Rob Nelson and former New York Yankee All-Star Jim Bouton were teammates with the Portland Mavericks. While sitting in the bullpen, they came up with an idea for an innovative new product to chew shredded bubble gum in a pouch.
Following the season, Nelson and Bouton made the gum in a frying pan, chopped it up, put it in pouches and pitched the idea to major gum companies. Amurol Confections, a novelty gum maker owned by the Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company, first released Big League Chew in 1980. While available originally in just one flavor, Big League Chew achieved $18 million sales during that first year.
A new Grape flavor was introduced the next year and strawberry followed in 1982. Big League Chew is currently available in Original, Grape, Strawberry, Watermelon, Sour Apple, Sour Cherry and Cotton Candy