George Herman “Babe” Ruth Jr., an American professional baseball player, is widely regarded as one of the greatest sports heroes in American culture.
Known for his home run records and charismatic personality, Babe Ruth left an indelible mark on the sport of baseball. This article explores the life, career, and lasting influence of this iconic sports figure.
What You Want to Know?
Who was Babe Ruth?
Born on February 6, 1895, in Baltimore, Maryland, Babe Ruth was an American professional baseball player widely renowned for his impressive career as a power hitter.
Ruth’s larger-than-life personality, combined with his extraordinary talent, brought a new level of popularity to baseball during the first half of the 20th century.
The Rise of the Babe: Why is Babe Ruth so famous?
Ruth’s fame stemmed from his impressive batting power. He began his Major League Baseball (MLB) career as a left-handed pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, but his prowess as a hitter led him to be transferred to the outfield, where he truly shined.
He achieved 714 home runs during his career—a record that stood for almost four decades—and led the New York Yankees to multiple World Series championships.
The sheer volume of Ruth’s home runs at a time when hitting them was relatively rare made him a legend in his own time. His vibrant personality, warm-hearted humor, and love for the fans further added to his popularity.
Career Accomplishments and Awards
During his 22-season career in the MLB, Ruth achieved a staggering array of records and awards. In addition to his home run record, he won four World Series titles, was named the American League’s Most Valuable Player once, and was a two-time All-Star.
He also earned a .342 batting average and pitched 29 2/3 consecutive scoreless innings in World Series play—a record that stood for 43 years.
Personal Life and Nicknames
Babe Ruth was married twice. His first marriage was to Helen Woodford, with whom he adopted a daughter. After Helen’s death, Ruth married Claire Merritt Hodgson, adopting her daughter, Julia.
His teammates often called him “Babe,” a nickname he received during his minor league days, and he was also famously known as the “Sultan of Swat” and the “Bambino” among the public.
Net Worth and Legacy
While it’s difficult to accurately assess Babe Ruth’s net worth due to the passage of time, it’s well-documented that he was one of the highest-paid players of his era. His salary, endorsements, and movie appearances made him a wealthy man.
Babe Ruth’s legacy, however, is priceless. His name is synonymous with baseball, and he’s remembered as one of the greatest players in the history of the sport. He was one of the five inaugural members inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1936.
The End of an Era: Babe Ruth’s Death and Funeral
Babe Ruth died of cancer on August 16, 1948, at the age of 53. His body lay in state at the main entrance to Yankee Stadium for two days, during which time an estimated 77,000 people paid their respects.
The funeral was held at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York, attended by thousands of fans and luminaries from the world of sports.
While many players have surpassed Babe Ruth’s records over the years—Barry Bonds currently holds the record for the most home runs in a career with 762—few have matched the charisma and cultural impact of the Sultan of Swat.
His larger-than-life persona, combined with his undeniable talent, forever changed the face of baseball and solidified his status as a legendary figure in American sports history.