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The Legend of Babe Ruth

George Herman Ruth, better known as "Babe Ruth", is widely regarded as the greatest baseball player in the history of the game. Also known as "The Bambino" and "The Sultan of Swat," a virtual home run machine whose exploits off the diamond were as colorful as the wonders he pulled off while on it. He was a national icon in every sense of the word and one of the key figures of the Roaring Twenties of American history.

Ruth was among the first five players to be inducted to the Baseball Hall of Fame. He was the first truly great baseball player and his excellence on the field inspired everyone to watch the game, including several generations of great baseball players who would follow after him. Ruth was the first player to hit over 30, 40 and 50 home runs in one season. In the 1927 season, he slammed 60 home runs, a record which stood for 34 years until Roger Maris broke it in 1961.

Aside from the players, Ruth’s fame and athletic exploits also inspired entire armies of fans. No one had done more to expand the fan base of baseball than Ruth. Spurred by the vast American and international popularity of Ruth, baseball’s popularity grew by leaps and bounds, prompting all major league teams to expand their home arenas to fit in more fans. It is no wonder that even today, they call Yankee Stadium as "The House That Ruth Built."

Ruth was also a member of the original American League All-Star team in 1933. He was named baseball's Greatest Player Ever in a ballot commemorating the 100th anniversary of professional baseball in 1936. Meanwhile, in 1998, in its list of "Baseball's 100 Greatest Players," The Sporting News ranked Ruth as number one. In 1999, fans elected Ruth to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.

Ruth’s abilities were so unique that he was able to change the way the game was played. In those days, the “inside game” had been the main strategy in baseball for decades. But Ruth hit the ball so hard and for so many home runs and extra base hits that other teams were compelled to follow suit and adopt the “power game.”

With Ruth as its centerpiece, the New York Yankees went on to become arguably the greatest sports dynasty in history. (1926, 1928)

Jonathon Hardcastle writes articles on many topics including Baseball, Games, and Gardening