Stoop ball

Stoop ball

Stoop ball (also spelled "stoopball") is a game that is played by throwing a ball against a stoop (stairs leading up to a building) on the pavement in front of a building. Historically, it has been popular in Brooklyn and other inner cities. It first became popular after World War I.

It has been played and enjoyed by a number of prominent personalities. Sandy Koufax began his Hall of Fame baseball career by playing stoop ball. , while Marv Albert missed the city game so much that he once had a stoop constructed at his house in the suburbs. Billy Joel played stoop ball on suburban streets.

Rules

There can be as few as one player per side. Sometimes there are 3 players (one infielder, two outfielders) on each side.

The "batter" throws a pink rubber ball (either a "spaldeen" or "pensie pinkie") at the stoop. The ball flies back towards the fielders, who are also facing the stoop.

Outs can be strikeouts (if the ball misses the edge of step), but are more likely to be fielder outs (a caught fly ball or a grounder). Hits are determined by distance of ball flight, or whether it hit the ground without being caught.

Alternatively, the person throwing the ball catches it on the fly or on a bounce. Each time a ball hits the stoop and is caught is worth 10 points. A "pointer" is a ball that hits the edge of a step and comes back as a hard line drive that could "take your mouth out." Catching a pointer on the fly is worth 100 points. Usually the winning score is 1,000 points, but it could be anything agreed upon. This game is great for endless hours of enjoyment.

United States Patent # 5531449 is for a "portable stoopball striker."

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