Babe Ruth vs Bill McKechnie
HARMONY PREVAILS IN BRAVES' CAMP
St. Petersburg, Fla. - (U.P.) - Manager Bill McKechnie of the Braves and Babe Ruth were re-established Tuesday as pals, working for the commom good of each other and the team.
McKechnie was ready to prove it by denying that he said the old home run slugger would not manage the club next season.
"I have said nothing of the kind to anyone," McKechnie declared in answer to reports quoting him as understanding that the Babe was hired to serve as vice president, assistant manager and player but not as a prospective pilot.
The plan, well known in the camp, is for the Babe to spend this season learning the finer points of managing from McKechnie in preparation for stepping in next season. McKechnie will then be elevated to a new position of general manager, with his duties divided between the playing field and front office.
Such a travesty that the Babe never got a chance to manage.
I mean, the Tigers let Ty Cobb do it, and you can't tell me Ty Cobb was a better manager than Babe Ruth would have been. Same for Hornsby.
Especially considering the Braves' record that season (38-115) in 1935, it's surprising that Babe wasn't given a chance at the reigns. I remember hearing an interview with Waite Hoyt where he said that Ruth's antics were overblown. Hoyt said that Ruth wasn't a cheerleader type of leader that he was much more disciplined than he ever got credit for being.
In playing "what if", though, I wonder how Yankees history may have been affected overall had the Babe been hired?Would Boston's managerial job have been open for Stengal to take over in '38? Without his experience with the Braves does he get hired by the Brewers and the the Oaks in the minors? The Oaks job, of course, leading to his taking over the Yankees in '49. It's not ludicrous to wonder if something as simple as the Babe getting hired by the Braves wouldn't have drastically altered the history of the game.