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The East Bronx Bombers being congratulated by the Latin Dukes.
Click for bigger picture
The East Bronx Bombers being congratulated by the Latin Dukes.
Youngest Team on the Block

The East Bronx Bombers showed heart and strong potential
Click for bigger picture
The East Bronx Bombers showed heart and strong potential.
The Stickball Classic 2000 opened up with a game featuring the Latin Dukes, against the East Bronx Bombers. The Dukes took the game pretty easily, but then again, the average age of the Bombers is about 11 years old. In contrast Curtis Sliwa, the host of the event refers to the Dukes as the Geritol crowd.

The Bombers started up just this past April when Edgar Guerra organized the team. Edgar now practices law in Pennsylvania, however, he understands the challenges that these kids face, having grown up in the Hunts Point section of the South Bronx. Edgar's mother now lives in the Morrisannia area. During his visits he got to know some of the young people in the neighborhood and started teaching them the game he loved as a kid.

"I got the kids interested in the game and we formed a team," he said "We've got 14 of them ranging in age from 8 to 16 years old. They all live on or close to Teller Ave between 166th and 167th street. I've made them understand that they've got to work to get good at this. Since April, they have committed their weekends from 3-5 in the afternoon and during the summer we've had practice on some weekdays as well."

According to Edgar, the kids are rapidly improving. To the spectators at this week's event, the team's talent was demonstrated on the field. Katie Fuentes, nine years old and the only girl on the team looked impressive running down a fly ball in the outfield and spectators commented on the composure the team showed throughout the event. However, for Edgar there is more to it than just the game.

"This is a great tradition which we need to pass on to the next generation," he said. It also builds other important characteristics. I can't always make it, so sometimes one of the older kids coaches. I try to give them experience in how to be leaders."

The Western Village Restaurant on 167th and Webster, the Oz Moving Company on 165th and Teller Ave and the Anibal Garage on Teller and 167th have provided funds for the program. Home | What's New | Sitemap | About Us | Contact us
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