Kenny, I’m glad that you…
Kenny, I’m glad that you remember the Mott Street team. Actually, the Mott Street team was a collection of all the best players from the various blocks of Little Italy–Mulberry St., Elizabeth St., Mott St., Grand St., Prince St,. etc. Many of the guys who played against your team and the other fine teams of that 1950-1960 era are gone. Do you remember Vinny Head? Tiger? Big Gary? Jimmy Alber? They’d hit the ball as though it were fired from a cannon; they’re all gone.
My generation of players–Mike Fink, Smitty, Anthony Arms, Billie Barns, Lil Maxie, Mimi, Crazy Dom, and the Beaver brothers (and a few others I can’t think of right now) were probably the last of the great stickball players from Little Italy (Mott Street).
I, myself, was more of a schoolyard type player because crowds made me nervous, and I could never play well with hundreds of people lining both sides of the street during those “big” games. Although, once I did go up to the South Bronx with a Mott Street team to play a doubleheader against an outstanding Puerto Rican squad.
On that particular day I fared well–hitting six line drives into the outfield: three of my liners fell in for hits (two singles and a double)and the other three were caught. My seventh at-bat I dribbled out to the third baseman.We got trounced the first game 8-3, but we were leading the second game 3-0 when an argument broke out in the eighth inning, and the game was never finished.
That was my last and finest moment “rounding those bases.” Perhaps, it was the summer of ’71 or ’72.