It's important to note that while he may not have actually called his shot, his intentions were well known.
Originally Posted by BiggestYankeeFan_in_Memphis
A few things about that series. It was really Gehrig would outshined Ruth, but like he so often did, Babe found a way to overshadow Gehrig with his larger than life showmanship and flair for the dramatic.
Whether you're aware of them or not, I'll paraphrase some key details about the issues of the series, from Creamer.
--- He was twice out of the lineup for extended periods of time during '32. In the middle of July he either tore or badly strained his right hamstring chasing after a fly ball. He was in the hospital for a few days and missed just over two weeks of the season.
In September, he had a sharp pain along his right side. He continued to play, but the pain got worse. He thought he had appendicitis. Not clear what it was, but there was no operation and he was kept in bed for several days with a fever. Ten days before the World Series he was back in uniform and felt weaker than ever.
He took BP against a young pitcher, and couldn't hit the ball into the stands. His quote, "I'm so weak I don't think I could break a pane of glass, but I'll be okay in a few days. They had me packed so deep in ice I haven't thawed out yet."
It was doubtful that he would even be able to play in that '32 World Series. In five games before the series, he was 3-16 without a homer. He found a way though, and for game one, he was the starting right fielder.
--- Mark Koenig was with the Yankees during '32, and was sent down to the minors. The Cubs picked him up late in the year, and Koenig played 33 games for them down the stretch. He fielded great at SS and hit .353 in those 33 games, helping the Cubs to win the pennant.
So when the Cubs were deciding to divide up their World Series pot, they voted to only give Koenig a half share. Other things of note: Rogers Hornsby was fired as Cubs manager about 2/3 through the season and received nothing. Frank Demaree, a young outfielder, who only played 23 games for the Cubs that year, but played center and batted fifth in 2 of the World Series games, including hitting a homer, was given a quarter share.
This is what initially caused the bad blood. Ruth was at the forefront, and was followed by other Yankees who were very vocal about their displeasure of Koenig only receiving half share. They called the Cubs cheapskates, the Cubs fired back, some more stuff was said, and the Cubs fired back directly at Ruth, calling him old, fat, washed up, and of course, the old stand by insult for him, "******."
--- The insults were flying heavily as the Yanks won the first 2 games in NY. The series then went to Chicago for game three. When Babe arrived with Claire at the train station, thousands of fans were crammed around them. Nothing unusual. Babe fought his way through and got to a cab. Escorted by motorcycle cops, and eventually ending up at the hotel, Babe and Claire were entering the hotel, when a woman spit on them. It is rumored that Babe was so upset by this, that he told Claire that night , "I'm going to hit 'em where it hurts most."
--- So we come to the game and the jockeying is worse than ever. As Creamer writes, "It is an argument over nothing, and the fact that Ruth did not point to center field before his home run does not diminish in the least what he did. He did challenge the Cubs before 50,000 people, did indicate that he was going to hit a home run and did hit a home run. What more could you ask?"
--- Later on, Ruth told Chicago sportswriter John Carmichael, "I didn't exactly point to any spot. All I wanted to do was give that thing a ride out of the park, anywhere. I used to pop off a lot about hitting homers, but mostly among the Yankees. Combs and Lazzeri and Fletcher used to yell, 'Come on, Babe, hit one.' So I'd come back, 'Okay you bums. I'll hit one!' Sometimes I did. Sometimes I didn't. Hell, it was fun."
--- After his initial comments about Koenig, Babe complained that the Chicago press had brought the fans down on him with stories about the bench jockeying. "They wrote about me riding the Cubs for being tight and about me calling them cheapskates," he said. "Well didn't you?" he was asked. "Well, weren't they?" he answered with irrefutable logic. Then he grinned and said, "Jesus, I wish I had known they only voted that kid Demaree a quarter share. Would I have burned them on that one."
--- Babe's first AB came with men on first and second and nobody out. Root threw a pitch outside for ball one, another one inside for ball two. Then he threw a fastball on the outside corner, and Babe hit a 3 run homer into the right field stands. The Yanks were up 3-0.
--- Gehrig hit a homer in the third with the bases empty to make it 4-0, and Ruth followed by hitting a towering drive which was caught right at the right centerfield fence.
--- The Cubs rallied in the bottom of the fourth inning, and the fourth of their runs especially delighted the crowd, since it came when Babe missed a shoestring catch. The razzing only got worse from there. A lemon was thrown at him in the on deck circle, as he waited to bat in the top of the fifth. Wasn't that big of a deal. In pregame, many lemons were thrown in his direction. He laughed and threw them back into the stands, in a good mood. Him and Gehrig put on a display in batting practice that outdid what they had done 5 years earlier in Pittsburgh. Babe hit nine balls into the stands, and Gehrig seven. After he was done hitting, Babe yelled to the Cub bench , "I'd play for half my salary if I could hit in the dump all the time." Gomez commented, "With that wind, I could hit a home run today."
--- As the game had just started, the Cubs' trainer yelled to Babe , "If I had you, I'd hitch you to a wagon, you potbelly." Ruth commented after the game, "I didn't mind no ballplayers yelling at me, but the trainer cutting in-that made me sore." Back to the fifth inning, the yelling and booing got louder and louder as he stepped in to face Root for the third time with a grin on his face. Shoeless already covered what happened during the AB.
Here are some shots from that video you mention Joe.
Last edited by Sultan_1895-1948; 05-05-2006 at 04:22 PM.
"By common consent, Ruth was the hardest hitter of history; a fine fielder, if not a finished one; an inspired base runner, seeming to do the right thing without thinking. He had the most perfect co-ordination of any human animal I ever knew." - Hugh Fullerton, 1936 (Chicago sports writer, 1893-1930's)