PokéBase - Pokémon Q&A
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You'll probably get a better answer if you ask here: https://www.smogon.com/forums/threads/ask-simple-questions-here-read-original-post-before-posting.3520646/ I guess it's because Poke balls are allowed in competitive battles even though they don't do anything.

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Switcheroo/Trick.
You can cripple your opponent by giving them a useless item (though things like Flame Orb would usually be better).

Like sumwun said, they're allowed as held items in competitive matches in the games, so they would probably have to have them in Showdown as well. The same thing happens with TRs and Sweets, items that seemingly have no use.

Plus, in Challenge Cup 1v1 formats, they're some of the many items that can be randomly generated for your Pokemon.

Hope I helped!

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Fling fails when the user holds any Poke ball.
Playing hackmons on showdown gives you a team where half of your Pokemon have Tr's as held items its frustrating