In a large bowl, using your hands, mix all ingredients until evenly combined, being careful not to overwork (you dont want to compact the meat too much). Put a little oil on your hands and form loosely into golf-ball sized meatballs-do not compress tightly.
Put 3 or 4 tablespoons of olive oil into a large frying pan and heat over medium.
Gently add meatballs and brown on all sides; this will take about 15 minutes. Drain on paper towels while you make the sauce.
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat.
Add the onion, garlic, herbs, and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook covered until the onion is soft and breaking down, 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the chicken stock, bring to a boil, and simmer uncovered until reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes, along with the juices and the sugar, and the browned meatballs, and bring to a simmer, and cook for an hour.
Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, 1/8 teaspoon pepper, and basil leaves, and taste for seasoning.
15 minutes before meatballs and sauce are done, bring a large pot of water to a boil, then salt generously.
Add pasta and cook according to directions, testing one noodle a minute or two early to make sure you dont overcook. Drain noodles well and serve with meatballs.