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Old 04-27-2017, 06:27 PM
ls7plus ls7plus is offline
Larry
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Southfield, Michigan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glchen View Post
I don't know if Ruth would be a star today, to be frank, or really anyone from the prewar era. For me, I don't think it would be the issue of international or African Americans playing the game. Ruth did go on barnstorming tours and to Japan, so I think he did play against those types of players and did equally well during that era. So even if Ruth's era had international and African American players, I think Ruth would do just as well or close to it. To add to this, I don't think you saw the star players whose careers crossed eras such as integration or adding more international players, their stats didn't just drop through the floor. Players like Ted Williams or Stan Musial did just fine adjusting as more players were added to the league and were still huge stars.

However, today's game has a lot more different types of pitches and you have specialty pitchers who pitch to just lefties, etc. Ruth may have had the talent to hit the fastball or curve in any era. However, he may not have had the talent to hit the slider or change-up or all of the different types of pitches in the modern era. Even with the modern training regimen, you still need the talent to hit those types of pitches and in different areas of the strike zone, and once pitchers of today's era know that you can't hit a certain type of pitch, they'll just keep throwing it at you all of the time.
I seem to recall that Ruth was tested by personnel from Harvard, who found his eyesight to be around 20/10, and his reflexes off the chart. Given his drive, I'm sure he would have taken full advantage of modern training methods (and I don't mean artificial additives) and would have been even faster and stronger. He would also have adapted to the newer pitches. I played over 30 fast pitch hardball in my early to mid 40's, and Jeff Hamilton, formerly of THE LOS ANGELES DODGERS, was also in that league on an opposing team. We had one pitcher with a slider I could never hit, even in batting practice, when he told me it was coming, due its very late, sharp break. Hamilton, however, went 3 for 5 off him in a game, with two homeruns and a double. When we talked to him after the game, he said that all he really needed to do was see the pitch once, and he would be ready for it. I am sure the Babe would have been able to do the same thing quite well, with his God-given gifts.

Also, if you've ever seen game film of the Babe hitting, you might think his full-body windup style (which is where the "swinging from the heals" phrase originated from) might be a hindrance, but a very similar style worked quite well for Bryce Harper in 2015 and has thus far this year. Just my 75 cents worth.

Highest regards,

Larry

Last edited by ls7plus; 04-27-2017 at 06:36 PM.
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