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*Babe Ruth Thread*

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  • 1905 Giants
    replied
    I was thinking about this the other day, but in "The Head Game" Roger Kahn said that his father told him it was more exciting to watch Ruth strike out then to watch a mortal man hit a homerun.

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  • strato
    replied
    If Retrosheet is accurate, Ruth had a career high 21 SH's in 1930, when he hit .359/49/153 with 136 walks, and then none for the last 5 years of his career. Retrosheet does leave category blank rather than enter a zero when there is no data-still seems a bit out of whack-

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    If I recall in Bill Jenkinson's book he found around 40+ bunt hits for Babe.
    I did some searching a few years ago, found around 20 in the news archives.

    Some of what I did find.
    Attached Files

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    Originally posted by drstrangelove View Post
    “If I'd tried for them dinky singles I could've batted around six hundred.”-- Babe Ruth
    “I swing big, with everything I've got. I hit big or I miss big. I like to live as big as I can.”-- Babe Ruth
    “All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it. I get back to the dugout and they ask me what it was I hit and I tell them I don't know except it looked good.”-- Babe Ruth



    swing from the heels (definition)

    To swing very hard at a pitch in an effort to get an extra base hit. "They swing from the heels at all times, and . . . simply refuse to go with a pitch and be satisfied with a groundball through the infield for a base hit."
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glossary_of_baseball_(S)

    If people have an issue with saying Ruth swung from the heels all the time, they should talk it over with Ruth. He's the one who said it.
    That was just Babe being Babe, off the cuff.
    I read more than a few comments on some home runs he hit where he gave a detail of the pitch some years later.

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    Looks to me like something is being missed here.
    Why the total dismissing of the notion that pitching "may have" been a plus for Babe in hitting.
    Is it that difficult to consider it may have helped.
    I would think if he had never pitched he still would have gone down as a great hitter.
    Last edited by SHOELESSJOE3; 07-09-2015, 07:09 AM.

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  • drstrangelove
    replied
    Just in case you meant me---since I said "swing from the heels"---I don't correlate swinging hard with being stupid. Ruth afaik did not try to hit behind the runner or choke up. He didn't go for singles. He swung hard not necessarily at everything he could reach, but at most things he could reach and which he felt he could drive. Here are quotes from Ruth:

    “If I'd tried for them dinky singles I could've batted around six hundred.”-- Babe Ruth
    “I swing big, with everything I've got. I hit big or I miss big. I like to live as big as I can.”-- Babe Ruth
    “All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it. I get back to the dugout and they ask me what it was I hit and I tell them I don't know except it looked good.”-- Babe Ruth

    These quotes imply a batting strategy of swinging from the heels all the time. None of them mean stupid. Williams basically did the same thing although he skipped certain pitches, but when he swung it was still hard and meant to drive the ball.


    swing from the heels (definition)

    To swing very hard at a pitch in an effort to get an extra base hit. "They swing from the heels at all times, and . . . simply refuse to go with a pitch and be satisfied with a ground ball through the infield for a base hit."
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glossary_of_baseball_(S)


    If anyone has quotes of Ruth saying that he choked up, tried to put the ball in play, would look to hit behind the runner, would lay off and look for singles to the opposite field, then those are ones I've never seen. If the argument is that he swung from the heels 97 or 98% of the time, not 100% of the time, then that's an argument not worth having.
    Last edited by drstrangelove; 07-09-2015, 07:36 AM.

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  • stuarthouse
    replied
    Originally posted by drstrangelove View Post
    I thought Ruth had always swung from the heels and never minded missing. I think Cobb is discounting Ruth's success as if to say " If I (Cobb) had been allowed to experiment, I could have done that, too."

    The Brother Matthias swing that Ruth copied and perfected was a home run swing, not a ground ball or line drive swing. My recollection is he had that swing long before 1914.



    That's not to say that being a pitcher didn't help Ruth as a batter. I think Ruth said it did. And it's not to say that Ruth wasn't allowed to swing and miss with less criticism than position players. I just think it's a self serving quote from Cobb.
    As I recall Ruth attributed his batting style to his attempt to emulate Joe Jackson. In looking at old Jackson film footage you can definitely see the similarity. As time passed however, he spread his feet a bit farther apart. Cobb is probably a bit right, but Ruth's batting style was definitely influenced much more by his days at St.Mary's where they played about 200 games a year. They even scheduled some games against small colleges. Babe's hitting as a pitcher was so good and the distance he could drive a ball so unbelievable that they switched him to the outfield. There did not seem to be much of a learning curve to his hitting talent. In 1915 he batted .315 and hit 4 homers as a 20 year-old rookie pitcher. One drive that year cleared the r.f. stand at St. Louis and then the 120' wide Grand Boulevard with its 4 street car tracks in the middle, on the fly. I think Cobb was merely trying to explain the unexplainable. We are still having trouble with it 100 years later.

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  • SHOELESSJOE3
    replied
    Originally posted by strato View Post
    In Robert Creamer's book The Babe, He quotes Ty Cobb as opining that the Babe's status s a pitcher in his early seasons significantly helped his developments as a HR hitter

    "He could experiment at the plate" said Cobb "He didn't have to get a piece of the ball. He didn't have to protect the plate the was a regular batter was expected to. No one cared much if pitcher struck out or looked bad at bat, so Ruth could take that big swing. If he missed, it didn't matter. An when he didn't miss, the ball went a long way. As time went on, he learned more and more about how to control that big swing and put the wood on the ball. By the time he became a fulltime outfielder, he was ready"

    He did strike out 27 times in his first 100 AB's his first two seasons.

    How much logic do you guys find in Cobb's blurb
    Long before I saw these word by Cobb, I said the same more than a couple of times on this board.
    The fact that Babe was a pitcher, it would appear it helped him at the plate, not just home runs.

    Pitch recognition playing some part. Lets remember he was not just a spot pitcher, pitcher only in 1914-15-16-17 and part time in 1918-19.
    Can it be said with certainty that his pitching helped his hitting, maybe not, but I believe a good possibility.

    Leave a comment:


  • drstrangelove
    replied
    I thought Ruth had always swung from the heels and never minded missing. I think Cobb is discounting Ruth's success as if to say " If I (Cobb) had been allowed to experiment, I could have done that, too."

    The Brother Matthias swing that Ruth copied and perfected was a home run swing, not a ground ball or line drive swing. My recollection is he had that swing long before 1914.



    That's not to say that being a pitcher didn't help Ruth as a batter. I think Ruth said it did. And it's not to say that Ruth wasn't allowed to swing and miss with less criticism than position players. I just think it's a self serving quote from Cobb.
    Last edited by drstrangelove; 07-09-2015, 05:56 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • strato
    replied
    In Robert Creamer's book The Babe, He quotes Ty Cobb as opining that the Babe's status s a pitcher in his early seasons significantly helped his developments as a HR hitter

    "He could experiment at the plate" said Cobb "He didn't have to get a piece of the ball. He didn't have to protect the plate the was a regular batter was expected to. No one cared much if pitcher struck out or looked bad at bat, so Ruth could take that big swing. If he missed, it didn't matter. An when he didn't miss, the ball went a long way. As time went on, he learned more and more about how to control that big swing and put the wood on the ball. By the time he became a fulltime outfielder, he was ready"

    He did strike out 27 times in his first 100 AB's his first two seasons.

    How much logic do you guys find in Cobb's blurb

    Leave a comment:


  • Bucketfoot
    replied
    Just leafing thru my Sports encyclopedia, always enjoy seeing the name 'Ping Bodie' next to Ruth's in the NYY roster of the early 20's. Just seems fitting.

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  • fan
    replied
    Pardon if this has been discussed. I posit Ruth probably played on the best (http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/NYY/1927.shtml) and worst(http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/BSN/1935.shtml) teams in the Modern Era.

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  • pheasant
    replied
    I haven't seen this before.

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  • Badge714
    replied
    Thanks Honus, this was new to me:

    Originally posted by Honus Wagner Rules View Post
    I'll have to get a copy of that.

    I found this as well.

    Babe Ruth's daughter remembers her father's legacy

    Leave a comment:


  • Honus Wagner Rules
    replied
    Originally posted by Badge714 View Post
    A friend just informed me of this. It may be worth a look:

    http://www.amazon.com/American-Hercu.../dp/B00REG9FBS
    I'll have to get a copy of that.

    I found this as well.

    Babe Ruth's daughter remembers her father's legacy

    Leave a comment:

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