This week in New England History: Babe Ruth traded!!

Article by: Carla Charter at Chairside New England History
On December 26 the Boston Red Sox sold Babe Ruth to the Yankees, who in turn, announced the purchase of Ruth on January 6 1920.  The two teams would never be the same again.

According to Brian Codagnone, Associate Curator at the Sports Museum in Boston, Ma.,  Ruth wasn’t the only player sold to New York between 1919 to 1923 .  Other players sold included “Bullet” Joe Bush, Joe Dugan, Waite Hoyt, Carl Mays, and Herb Pennac. “Some of the best players went to New York,” he said. Harry Frazee took the team apart, the story was, to invest in a play called No, No, Nanette but that was never verified.  Either way he bought the team, gutted it, and sold it to Bob Quinn in 1923

  Mike Gibbons, Historian and former Executive Director of the Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum, in Baltimore, Md., said the sentiment among the Red Sox staff and the team was to keep Ruth as he was becoming a burgeoning star. The fans were not happy either, he continued.  Wherever Ruth went stadiums filled. “He was bigger than life, an American Hercules. His personality perfectly suited for the Roaring 20s in New York City.  Everything her did was big.”

   According to Linda Ruth Tosetti, Babe Ruth’s granddaughter “The new generation does not realize that he (Ruth) did not choose to leave, he was sold.  The Babe loved Boston he was settled there and had a farm in Sudbury, he was very happy where he was …he didn’t want to leave. He was upset about leaving.”   

   As for the famous curse of the Bambino, Tosetti continued, she does not believe the Babe cursed the team. “Baseball guys are a superstitious bunch.  He (Ruth) would always touch third base, he would touch the base even if he was out.  He would not throw a curse anywhere because it would come back on threefold.  What he did say to a paper, which is misconstrued, is that without us they will never win another series.”

  As for their ever being another Ruth, she continued, “He was like a comet that came through. Every once in a while, in the universe, there is this person who is like a comet, who radiates and will never be seen again. He gave hope to the hopeless in the Great Depression and helped them forget the hard times.

  For more information on Ruth you can visit the following websites:

Official Babe Ruth Family Site

The Sports Museum

Babe Ruth Birthplace Museum