Interesting Article on Ruth Sale to Yankees

Young Babe Ruth ~ He didn't choke the bat forever.

Young Babe Ruth
~ He didn’t choke the bat forever.

Interesting Article on Ruth Sale to Yankees

Larry Getlen has written a nice concise, in-depth piece summary review of Glen Stout’s new book, “The Selling of the Babe: The Deal That Changed Baseball and Created a Legend.” The piece was published this week, March 6, 2016, in the New York Post.

Book author Stout apparently argues that the Red Sox and most of the baseball world still didn’t realize what they had on their hands in Ruth when they dealt him in January of 1920.

So, why did Boston deal Babe Ruth away? He was a one-on-one likable guy, but he also was a totally impulsive and self-centered fellow whose vulnerabilities to self-destruction by decadent behavior touched all the bases off the field – from gluttony to heavy drinking to carousing that centered upon brothel patronage  all over the American League – to blowing all his money on gambling and other impulsive wasteful spending. For Ruth, there were no rainy days to save for. – For the Babe, life was an everyday hedonistic holiday. Life was to be lived to the end of “having fun” all the time – regardless of consequences – even if you had to miss part, or all, of a ball game to do it.

Sure, Ruth had this perverse ability to hit home runs like no one else, but the Red Sox reaction was first to resent the fact that Babe Ruth’s increasing power production as a hitter seemed to be distracting him from being the excellent pitcher he had been in his first four years. Then, when Boston tried to convert him into an outfielder, and removed him from pitching altogether, Ruth pouted over the change, claiming that he got bored standing in the outfield all the time, when he could be pitching sometimes too.

In the end, the Ruth sale to New York was not as simple as Harry Frazee needing the money for his Broadway production of  “No, No, Nanette.” – On many levels, the Red Sox wanted to unload the guy because he was very high maintenance. They failed to realize the one-of-a-kind-gem they had on their hands. Without full awareness, if any at all, the Red Sox were dealing away the man from Boston who already had begun the offensive process of changing the game with his new uppercut power swing at the ball.

Once Ruth did his thing in the 1920s, and it became obvious what Ruth had meant to the birth and spread of power-hitting baseball, the Red Sox only found consolation in the thought that he would not have hit as many home runs, had he been forced to remain in Boston and play all of his home games at Fenway Park.

As far as “The Curse of the Bambino” that kept the Sox out of the winner’s circle for 86 years, Stout says forget about it. The Red Sox problems for decades were poor player development in general and the kind of organizational racism that allowed players like Jackie Robinson and Willie Mays to escape their grasp when each was available right under their noses as prospects.

Here’s the link to the New York Post book review by Larry Getlen:


Thanks to Darrell Pittman for sending me this story link earlier today.


 eagle-0range Bill McCurdy

Publisher, Editor, Writer

The Pecan Park Eagle

Houston, Texas


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