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1999 NYC Stickball Classic
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1999 NYC Stickball Classic
section guide

Intro / highlights

• 1999 Stickball Classic home
• Kickoff ceremony coverage
• Finals coverage
• Event rules

• Go to Stickball section


• 1999 NYC Stickball Classic discussion
• Stickball: general discussion
• Streetplay discussion home

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Finals (10/3/99)

• Finals coverage
• Photo galleries: 1 | 2 | 3

Semi-finals (9/18/99)

• Semi-final coverage
• 4th Str. vs. Emperors
• Latinos vs. Bombers
• Knights vs. Old-Timers

Staten Island (9/11/99)

• Staten Island event overview

New Jersey (8/28/99)

• NJ event overview

Queens (8/7/99)

• Queens event coverage
• Essay: Caledonia Old-Timers
• Essay: Family values
• Essay: Positively Fourth Street
• Photo galleries: 1 | 2 | 3

Bronx (7/24/99)

• Bronx event coverage
• The Latinos, Bronx champions
• Longball contest
• Einstein's team
• The Emperors
• Curtis Sliwa speaks
• Photo galleries: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

Manhattan (7/17/99)

• Manhattan event coverage
• Longball contest
• The Clean Machine
• The Bronx Old Timers
• Photo galleries: 1 | 2 | 3

Brooklyn (7/10/99)

• Brooklyn event coverage
• Photo galleries: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

Event kickoff (6/29/99)

• Kickoff coverage
• Photo galleries: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

Passing on a tradition

Kevin connects
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Kevin connects
Kevin McGrath was at the plate, ready to take his last swing. He'd missed the ball in 4 of his first 5 attempts. This was surely no way to impress his kids, Brian and Kevin Jr., who had come with Dad to participate in the 1999 Queens Stickball Classic.

The boys looked on embarrassingly, waiting for Dad to finish. Kevin was the last of 40 entries in the long ball competition, which opens the event. Approximately 25 of the players had hit the ball 200 feet or more to receive the Daily News 2 sewer pin. Kevin was not one of them - yet.

On his last swing, Kevin finally connected. It was as if the old equipment just needed a bit of greasing, some practice after going 20 years or so without use. Kevin's blast of 240+ feet placed him second in the Queens long ball competition. While he will not receive the first place gift certificate from Modells, nor represent the borough of Queens at the city finals in September, Kev did gain some serious respect from the boys.

McGrath and sons then competed in the games as part of the "Generators" a team made of KeySpan Energy employees and several local Ozone Park/Howard Beach residents. The Generators won their 7 inning opening game 1-0. A lucky placement in the elimination tournament meant that the Generators could be crowned the borough champs with only one more victory. Their opponents, the Fourth Street Boys, were group of young players from Manhattan (you can represent a borough in the Stickball Classic, even if your team is from a different location).

The game between the Generators and Fourth Street Boys was one of the best seen in this year's competitions. Kevin Sr. now in the groove clobbered the ball to get on-base and move the runners forward and Kevin Jr's RBI single helped tie the game up at 2-2 going into the bottom of the seventh. Curtis Sliwa of WABC, the Stickball Commissioner announced the game, enjoyed the McGrath clan praising Dad for passing on the tradition to sons Brian and Kevin Jr. "one of the lost boys of Generation X." Although Sliwa taunted the "carpet baggers" from Manhattan, the Fourth Street Boys were able to score in the bottom of the seventh and take the 3-2 win.

Win or lose, the game was spectacular for both the players and the spectators. The McGraths were all wearing a big smile at the end of the day. Father and sons surely got what they came for, a shared experience and the carrying forth of a great tradition.
Queens event coverage

Essay: The Caledonia Old-Timers
Essay: Family values
Essay: Positively Fourth Street

Photo gallery: Longball competition
Photo gallery: Classic characters
Photo gallery: Three teams

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