Babe Ruth – Give the Devil his Due

By jason keen
Updated: September 11, 2010
Babe Ruth Record

Most of the articles I write are about a feat in baseball from an unexpected player. Who would have thunk that Tony Gywnn is the only player in modern baseball history to steal 55 or more bases and have a .370 batting average? But sometimes you just gotta give the devil his due.

Babe Ruth is regarded by many as the best player to ever step onto a major league field. He has the highest career wins above replacement player (WAR), highest slugging percentage (SLG), highest on-base plus slugging percentage (OPS), and the list goes on and one.

As far as individual season accomplishments are concerned he remains the only player to hit 60 or more home runs and maintain a .350 batting average. I think this is difficult to us to grasp because most players that we have grown up with specialize in batting for average or batting for power.

His 1927 season would be like combining an Ishiro Suziki with a Ryan Howard (forgive me for using Howard but with the exception of the steroids era he is the only player to hit 58 home runs in the last 45 years). Realistically, only Ruth and Marris have reached 60 home runs as far as I am concerned.

Albert Pujols, who is by far the best hitter in baseball since I stepped foot on the planet, has reached the .350 batting average plateau twice in his career. But he has never reached the 50 home run plateau let along the highly coveted 60 home run mark. This is why many consider Ruth the best player to ever step foot on a diamond.

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