The New York Emperors
The NY Emperors are one of the best known stickball teams in the nation. Part
of it is because they've fielded a great team year after year. Part of it is
because they share the same name as the Emperor Stickball League, Bronx's
recent contribution to the game. Captain Tony "Choochoo" Herrera explained
how the league was born.
"We started back in 1985. Lots of the guys were regular paddle ball players.
Little Manny came around and got me, Frankie Calderon, Frankie Sancehz and
some of the other guys into playing stickball and then involved in founding
At one point the League had 13 teams (six are remaining). Unlike the E.
Harlem league, in the Bronx, they play fungo like they do in the Classic, but
allow only one swing. The regular schedule calls for 30 games, which involve
Sunday double headers from April through August. There is also a Memorial
Weekend Invitational tournament and on Labor Day, and a tournament down in
Florida. A total of sixteen teams from Florida, Puerto Rico and New York will
show up to play.
Although their name is not as widely known, this year the Latin Dukes are
giving the Emperors a run for the money. The Dukes are curently in first
place and eliminated the Emperors from today's Bronx competition with a 6-4
victory in the first game of the day.
These guys are our rivals, so you hate losing to them said Pete, one of the
team's veterans. Hey, but no one wins all the time. We'll be back playing