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Biography Babe Ruth

Updated on September 3, 2009

Babe Ryth

Babe Ruth All time Legend

Early Life:

Ruth was born in Baltimore on 6th Feb 1895 to a German American Parents, Kate Schamberger-Ruth and George Herman Ruth Sr. who owned a succession of saloons and sold lightning rods. Ruth and his sister Mamie were the only siblings who survived past infancy.

When he was seven years old he was sent to St. Mary's Industrial School for Boys, a reformatory and orphanage, and was signed to the custody over to the Catholic missionaries who ran the school. Ruth spent 12 years at St. Mary’s, only visiting with his family for special occasions. It was through Brother Matthias Boutlier, the Head of Discipline at St. Mary's, Ruth got interest towards the baseball. He was like father to Ruth who taught him to read and write and helped Ruth in hitting; fielding and his skill progressed towards pitching in baseball. At ST. Mary’s Ruth learnt tailoring, where he became a professional shirt-maker and was a part of school band and drama club.

In 1911 when playing a match Joe Engel a Mt. St. Mary’s student and baseball player informed about Babe to Jack Dunn of Ruth who was the minor league manager at Baltimore Orioles. Dunn has to become legal guardian of Ruth as he was minor (19 years. In those days people less than 25 years were called minors). The players in the team nicknamed him as “Jack’s newest babe”, later the name was modified as Babe Ruth from then on.

Major League career

Red Sox years

Ruth appeared as pitcher in the five games for Red Sox in 1914. After he had finished the season with 2-1 record he was married to Helen Woodford a waitress he met in Boston on 17 October 1914. In 1916 Ruth had nine shutouts, an AL record for left-handers that was unmatched until Ron Guidry tied it in 1978 which has not yet broken by anyone until now by a left-hander. In 1918, Ruth pitched in 20 games, posting a 13–7 record with a 2.22 ERA. He was mostly used as an outfielder, and hit a league-leading 11 home runs. His performance was shadowed when he walked off the team in July following an argument with Boston's manager.

During this period Ruth not only known for his pitching numbers his hitting prowess came into the limelight. Ruth, who was first picked in the team for pitching, played 44 games in which he had not pitched during 1915-17. In the 1919 season, Ruth was used to pitch only for 17 of the 130 games that were being played during that season. On December 1919 Frazee sold Ruth to New York Yankees. The reason behind the trade was that Ruth demanded Frazee to double his pay, due to controversy between them Frazee decided to trade him.

The Yankee Years


In Yankees Ruth was transformed to power hitting outfielder from a pitcher. Ruth re-wrote the record books of Baseball in terms of his hitting achievements in his 15 years career in Yankees playing more than 2000 matches.

1920: Hit 54 home runs and batted .376. His .847 average was the major record until 2001 broken by Barry Bonds. Philadelphia Phillies managed to score more home runs 64 as a team than Ruth as an individual.

1921: Hit 59 home runs and batted .378 and average of .846 which helped Yankees to their First Championship Title. His home run #139 in his eight year of his career was the breaking of record created by Roger Connor who scored 138 home runs.

In 1921 World Series Yankees was against New York Giants. Yankees won their first 2 games with Ruth in their front line. Ruth injured his elbow during Game 2 by sliding into third base. He was advised to take rest but he played Game 3, 4 and 5 and the pinch hit in Game 8 in a best of 9 games. Yankees lost the series and the productivity of Ruth decreased in the course of the series. Ruth could manage .316, drove 5 runs and hit his first World Series Home run.

Ruth was on the limelight during 1921 World Series for some bad reasons too. Ruth was suspended for 6 weeks in 1922 season as a disciplinary action was taken against him for appearing in an exhibition match during the off-seasons. A rule prohibited players from playing exhibition matches during off-seasons in order to prevent Series participants from "restaging" the Series and undermining its value.

1922: The year was great disappointment for Ruth career. He was made the captain of Yankees. He was ejected from the game after 5 days for throwing the dirt at the umpire and then climbed into the stands to confront a heckler; Ruth was stripped off from the captaincy.

1923: He reached the career high batting record of .393 and major league leading 41 home runs. Yankees won their First World Series title, which was mainly by the performance of Ruth. He batted .368, walked eight times, scored eight runs, hit three home runs and slugged 1.000 during the series.

1924: He hit .374 to lead the American Batting Table. He finished second with 121 runs to Goose Goslin’s 129 runs. He was leading the Major Leagues with 46 Home Runs. Yankees ended up second by 2 games next to Washington Senators.

1925: During this year Ruth was reported for a stomach surgery in New York. He could play just 98 games, with .290 average and 25 home runs. Yankee team finished penultimate in the American League Table.

1926: This season Ruth had 47 home runs and .376 batting and 146 RBIs for Yankees. Yankees also won the AL title. During this season Ruth was remembered for a costly base running blunder. Ruth had a reputation as a good but overaggressive base runner.

1927: During this period because of Ruth’s presence Yankees was called as Murderer’s Row due to the strength of the hitting lineup and the effect it had on opposing pictures. The team won an AL record of 110 games which was broken by Seattle Mariners in 2001 by winning 116 matches.

1928: During this season Ruth scored 54 home runs (4th time he surpassed the score of 50 home runs in his career). During this season they bet the arch rivals St. Louis Cardinals. Ruth bated an amazing .625 (the second highest in the World Series history) which includes 3 home runs. Thus Yankees became first team to sweep their opponents in consecutive World Series.

Phase out with Yankees:

The period 1929-1934 was not the period that belonged neither to Yankees nor to Ruth. They both could not do well together. In 1929 Yankees failed to make to the World Series. Yankees rank position began to slip from there on. In 1930 Ruth received a salary of $ 80,000 per year which was more than then President Mr. Hoover (whose annual compensation was $ 75,000). In 1932 Yankees won 107-47 in which Ruth played his path by hitting .341, with 41 home runs and 137 RBIs. But Ruth did miss 21 games during the season.

In 1933 Ruth batted .301, with 34 home runs, 103 RBIs with a league leading 114 walks. During this season Ruth had a career total of 94-46 which was an exceptionally high winning percentage. In 1934 Ruth had a .288 average, 22 home runs. Ruth reached a personal milestone of 700 Home runs during this season and decided to quit from the game.

In 1935 he was sold to Boston Braves. There was nothing much left in his career after that. On May 25th Ruth scored his last 3 home runs of his career. His last home run cleared the roof of the old Forbes Field. After the game against Giants, Ruth summoned the reporter to the locker room and announced that he is retiring from the game. During that season he hit .181 with 6 home runs in 72 bats.


In 1946 Ruth was suffering from malignant tumor in his neck that encircled his left carotid artery. After the post operative therapy he had lost almost 35kg (80 pounds). Ruth was suffering from headaches, hoarseness and had difficulty swallowing. He was given experimental treatment but he did know that he was suffering from cancer.

In 1947 Ruth started a charity for disadvantaged children called Babe Ruth Foundation. Babe Ruth Day was held in Yankee stadium in order to raise money for the event. Despite his critical health condition Ruth attended the 25th anniversary of opening Yankee Stadium in which he had a get together meeting with his teammates and shared memory of 1923.


Shortly after the meeting Ruth was taken to the hospital. He attended the premiere of the film THE BABE RUTH STORY, a biographic picture of his own life. On 16th August 1948 Babe Ruth died due to Pneumonia at the age of 53. His autopsy reports revealed that Ruth had cancer near his nose which spread to mouth and across his whole body. His body was kept at Yankee Stadium for the public to pay homage to the greatest legend of all time.


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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      thanks for the info

    • Double Down profile image

      Double Down 

      9 years ago

      Nice article. The amazing thing about Ruth was his incredible OBP. Opponents just couldn't get him out. Is the opening photo from a the babe ruth story movie?

    • the duce 88 profile image

      the duce 88 

      9 years ago from West Coast

      Nice biography Ruth is a legend! He's the second best baseball player of all time only behind Barry Bonds.


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