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Babe Ruth

 

Babe Ruth

George Herman “Babe” Ruth, Jr. was born in Baltimore, Maryland in February 1895. His parents were Kate and George, Ruth, Sr. As a young boy, Babe was very mischievous, and by the age of seven he was drinking, chewing tobacco and becoming hard for his parents to control. They sent him to a school for boys, ran by Catholic brothers. Brother Matthias taught him baseball and worked numerous hours teaching him the game. Brother Gilbert introduced Babe to the owner of the Baltimore Orioles, Jack Dunn. At 19 years old Babe signed a contract with Dunn, and Dunn became his legal guardian. Babe got the nickname because of his status as a rookie, being “Dunn’s baby” and his youthful appearance. In 1914 Dunn sold Babe’s contract to the Boston Red Sox, where he played until 1919. In 1920 the New York Yankees hired Babe Ruth, where he played until 1934. In 1935, he played for the Boston Braves.

Yankee Stadium opened in 1923. In the first game played there, Babe Ruth hit the stadium’s first home run, and the stadium soon became known as “The House That Ruth Built”. During the 1932 World Series against the Chicago Cubs, Babe called a shot by gesturing toward the center field in an attempt to predict the hit when he was up to bat.

Babe became known as the greatest home run hitter of his time, making him one of the most popular players in the history of baseball. He was the only player to hit three home runs twice in a World Series game, during 1926 and 1928. What most people don’t know is that before Babe became a home run hitter he was a successful left-handed pitcher, winning 92 games and only losing 44. His career record of 714 home runs was broken in 1974 by Hank Aaron. His career batting average was .342.

On August 16, 1948, Babe Ruth died of throat cancer. It is believed his lifelong use of tobacco caused his cancer.

He was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1936.

Fun Facts:

- since he was the third batter in line, his official number was 3
- he sometimes smoked a dozen cigars a day
- there’s a candy bar named Baby Ruth
- The bat he used to hit his first home run at Yankee Stadium sold for $1.26 million
- Also known as “The Bambino”, “The Sultan of Swat” and “The Collosus of Clout”
- Charity work, especially for children, was something Ruth enjoyed
- Memorably quote … “watch my dust!”

Resources:

- www.wikipedia.org
- Encarta Desk Encyclopedia