US journalist 'debunks' basketball icon Babe Ruth's legendary 'called shot' in 1932
An American journalist has reportedly debunked late basketball icon Babe Ruth's legendary 'called shot', which eclipsed not only his then-team New York Yankee's win in 1932 but their entire four-game series sweep.
Ruth's second homer that day became one of the most famous home runs in baseball history - the infamous 'called shot' that he supposedly predicted by pointing to center field, which became one of the defining moments of Ruth's already remarkable career.
However, the New York Post reports that there has long been reason to question its accuracy, with veteran journalist Ed Sherman spelling out the relevant events of the day to determine whether Ruth's shot was one of baseball's greatest achievements or simply the most loved and lasting of the sport's outsized myths.
The report mentioned that there was already bad blood between the Yankees and the Chicago Cubs when they met for the World Series, with Cubs focusing their anger mainly on Ruth, with insults from their fans and players, following which Ruth responded supposedly with the 'call' part of the much-heralded 'called shot'.
To determine the legend's veracity, Sherman scoured press reports of the event and spoke with the few living witnesses he could find, including a retired Supreme Court Justice, and found out that an important fact was that almost all of the people who claim Ruth called the shot based their conclusions solely on what they saw - Ruth's arm gesture.
Sherman also found out that almost none of the 'called shot' supporters were close enough to hear what Ruth had said to the Cubs' dugout and/or to the team's pitcher that day, adding that the accounts of the day's sportswriters not only propped up the story but might have ignited it in the first place.
Had this happened today, Sherman notes, the interview would have gone viral, the story would have died, and the legend would never have spread, although back then, the account was only seen locally and was quickly forgotten, drowned out by the desire of the passionate to create something more.
(Posted on 03-02-2014)