American baseball player Babe Ruth was renowned for his exceptional skills on the field. It was the position he played that made him famous in Major League Baseball.
Babe Ruth started out as a pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, but rose to fame after playing slugging Outfielder for the New York Yankees in Major League Baseball (MLB). He broke various records during his time with the Yankees.
Ruth’s role in Major League Baseball was significant as both a pitcher and outfielder. Learn more about his journey below.
In baseball, a pitcher refers to the player who throws the ball towards the catcher (who stands behind the batter of the opposing team), attempting to stop the batter from hitting the ball.
There are three outfielders, who play defensive positions in baseball: the left fielder, the right fielder and center fielder.
They must attempt to catch/run after the balls hit by the batter of the opposing team, and quickly return infield with the ball before the batter is able to reach a base.
Babe Ruth’s Path To MLB
George Herman Ruth Junior (who would later become known as Babe Ruth),was born in Pigtown, Baltimore in 1895 to parents Katherine and George Herman Ruth Senior.
When Ruth was a young boy, he was sent to the reformatory St. Mary’s Industrial School for Boys, because he had become somewhat of a delinquent.
Here, he was mentored in baseball by skilled baseball player and disciplinarian of the school, Brother Matthias Boutlier.
Ruth was very close to Brother Matthais, who greatly influenced his love and passion for baseball.
The school also had a great influence on his strong Catholic faith.
Ruth was left-handed, an unusual trait for third base and shortstop, which were his main positions at St. Mary’s.
Although he played all positions, he soon became the best pitcher at the school, and was subsequently permitted to leave the school to play matches over the weekend.
Ruth signed onto his first official baseball contract with a Minor League, the Baltimore Orioles, in 1914 by Jack Dunn.
In his first match, he played shortstop and pitched two innings, leading the Baltimore Orioles to victory.
Despite the Orioles being in first place for several seasons, they did not get much paid attendance, which caused Ruth to look towards other teams.
He was given the nickname “Babe” after Dunn became his legal guardian. The veterans in the game called him “Dunn’s Babe” for always following Dunn around.
In 1914, Dunn sold Ruth’s contract to the major league team Boston Red Sox, which got him noticed in baseball.
He won his first two games as pitchers, and was thereafter asked to pitch regularly.
During his time with the Boston Red Sox, Ruth won three championships and set several records as a pitcher.
However, the owner of Red Sox ran into debt, and sold Ruth’s contract to the New York Yankees for $125,000.
After Ruth left, the Red Sox did not win another championship till 2004, and this drought was nicknamed “Curse of the Bambino,” one of Ruth’s many nicknames.
With the Yankees, Ruth turned from pitcher to a full-time outfielder, and in the 15 years that he played for them, they won 4 world championships.
In 1919, Ruth set the record for most single-season home runs at 29. In 1920, he doubled this record when playing in New York, hitting 59 home runs.
He broke it once again in 1927 with 60 home runs, and this title was held for 34 long years.
Ruth was the leader of baseball’s all-time home runs at the time, and broke several other records such as highest slugging percentage, and most years leading a league in home runs.
Gaining fame as a pitcher, and breaking records as an outfielder and batter, Ruth was a legendary baseball player.