I remember playing stickball (fast pitch wall ball against the school wall in the summer months from early morning until the sun set and we could no longer see the ball. Unlike most of the games played in NYC, those of us on Long Island that played usually used a tennis ball instead of a pinkee ball. The advantage of using a tennis ball was it couldn’t be hit as far. This was critical if you were playing on a small field. It was also great for pitching because the seams on a tennis ball are shaped exactly like a baseball and you can throw all of the same types of pitches (curve, screw, 2 & 4 seam fastball, etc). Actually, you can get a lot more movement on a tennis ball than you can with a baseball. One of the great things I remember about stickball was the ability to get a game going just about anywhere at any time. Our group of kids used to go from school yard to school yard and play against anyone who was willing to play. Those were some great times.
Original author: Ed Punt [e-mail]