HISTORICAL INNACURACIES IN
THE 1992 JOHN GOODMAN FILM
by David Pietrusza
As entertaining as "The Babe" may be (a highly dubious
point), baseball scholars may find the film as riddled with
errors as a Mets boxscore. The miscues include:
- Portraying Babe Ruth as a chronically overweight kid.
Perhaps they are confusing him with William Bendix.
- Has Boston management mulling sending a poor-
hitting Babe to the minors. Demoting a pitcher for that
reason is pretty unlikely. Besides Ruth was demoted to
Providence in 1914. That's left out of the film.
- The owner when Babe joined the Sox was not the
infamous Harry Frazee. It was Joe Lannin.
- Ruth did not punch out an umpire when courting Helen
Woodford in 1915—that was not until 1917.
- "Jumping Joe" Dugan was never Ruth's Red Sox
- Has the Babe being paid more than the President on
joining the Yankees. That didn't happen until 1930.
Hoover was President, and Ruth sure did have a better
- Inexplicably ignores the "Bellyache Heard Round the
- Totally garbles the chronology of Ruth's marriage to
Claire Hodgson—marrying them while Helen was still
alive and has Helen living until 1934. Helen died in
1929. The Babe would never considering marrying
outside the Catholic Church.
- Implies that Claire was responsible for getting Ruth a
fair price for his endorsements, ignoring the role of his
famous "ghost writer" Cristie Walsh.
- Ruth was not released by Colonel Ruppert and forced
to hook on with the Boston Braves. A deal was worked
out. Then Ruth was released.
- Ruth was not cut $125,000 on joining the Braves. He
was trimmed from $35,000 to $25,000—still the club's