Babe Ruth and baseball go together like bacon and eggs. For over 22 seasons “The Bambino” achieved many Major League Baseball hitting and pitching records. He hit 714 home runs, batted in 2,213 runs and twice won 23 games as a pitcher. Most of his illustrious career was spent with the New York Yankees.
Even though he was well past his prime, he loved the game and wanted to continue playing. The Yankees traded him to the Boston Braves in 1935, a team in Boston with that name at the time.
Babe Ruth played one of his last games for the Boston Braves against the Reds in Cincinnati. The great Ruth was no longer as agile as he had once been. He fumbled the ball and threw badly, and in one inning alone his errors were responsible for most of the five runs scored by Cincinnati.
As the Babe walked off the field after the third out and headed toward the dugout, a crescendo of yelling and booing reached his ears. Just then a boy jumped over the railing onto the playing field. With tears streaming down his face, he threw his arms around the legs of his hero.
Ruth didn’t hesitate for one second. He picked up the boy, hugged him, and set him down on his feet, patting his head gently. The noise from the stands came to an abrupt halt. Suddenly there was no more booing. In fact, a hush fell over the entire park.
In those brief moments, the fans saw two heroes: Babe Ruth, who in spite of his dismal day on the field could still care about a little boy and the small lad, who cared about the feelings of another human being. Both had melted the hearts of the crowd.
Ruth must have felt defeated at that moment, but it was a tender and moving act for him to pick that boy up. Life can deal us some pretty difficult blows, many of which we inflict upon ourselves, but if we love Jesus we’ll find a way to shake ’em off and help those around us. And maybe, just maybe, people will notice for once, stop their booing, and their hearts will be changed.
Thanks to Ted Engstrom for sharing this story.
I’m searching for life experiences like this today. Surely Babe Ruth was over the hill and his glory days were behind him. Maybe his performance that day deserved all the boos that the crowd in Cincinnati gave him. It took a young boy to go beyond all the booing in the stands to recognize someone really special when he saw him.
He went and gave Babe Ruth what he needed as a human being as his great career was ending – a hug. And “The Bambino” amidst all the booing gave the lad what he needed most – a hug. The end result with the crowd in the stadium — suddenly there was no more booing. The Babe and the boy had melted their hearts.
Oh, do I miss that in our world today! I see great people and little ones go out of their way to care, truly care about others. But where are there the hearts that melt anymore? How come the booing never stops today on TV and in so many human hearts?
What are YOU doing today to stop the booing of some really fine people of character who truly care about others?
IF JESUS WERE ALIVE TODAY, MANY CHRISTIANS WOULD NOT WANT TO SIT NEXT TO JESUS ON A PLANE!