Don't let the fear of striking out hold you back.”
The “Babe” was born George Herman Ruth in 1895 and at age seven he was taken to St. Mary’s Industrial School for boys. It was both a reformatory school and an orphanage and served as his home for the next twelve years. Listed as an incorrigible child with numerous counts of misbehavior—perhaps due to his parents long work hours—they signed over custody to the Xaverian Brothers at the school.
George found a mentor at the school in Brother Matthias, a large muscular man, who served as an inspiration for all aspects of George’s impressionable life, including baseball. At age nineteen, Jack Dunn, owner and manager of the minor league team, the Baltimore Orioles, recruited this rising talent. Because of George’s young age he became known as Jack’s “babe” and the name stuck. Within five months the Boston Red Sox signed him to his first major league contract. Later he joined the New York Yankees.
During his twenty two year professional career he carved his name into baseball history and American folklore with over sixty home runs as “The Great Bambino” and “The Sultan of Swat.”
The Babe spent his post-baseball life doing radio talk shows and speaking at orphanages and hospitals. He was among the first five players inducted into the Baseball Hall of fame with Ty Cobb, Walter Johnson, Christy Mathewson and Honus Wagner. Fittingly, the numerous awards after his passing, such as the Associated Press’ Athlete of the Century, have acknowledged his legendary status as the most well-known baseball player of all-time.