Ruth? He is still in the spotlight, still going strong

A century after his birth, four decades after his death, the amazing Babe maintains a powerful grip on America's imagination

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It is now more than 46 years since he died, yet every day Babe Ruth's name pops up on radio or television, in newpaper columns and magazine stories, in casual conversations. As George Bernard Shaw asked 70 years ago, "Who is this Baby Ruth?" Why does he have such a hold on the American imagination?

George Herman (Babe) Ruth was the best baseball player who ever lived. He was better than Ty Cobb, better than Joe DiMaggio, better than Ted Williams, better than Willie Mays, better than Henry Aaron, better than Barry Bonds. He was also fun to be around, and was filled with a youthful exuberance and playfulness that never left him. He always reacted to the fans, played to them, was aware of them. Yet, for all his carefree ways, he almost always retained a sense of obligation as a hero.

In essence, there's never been anyone else like him. And that, I suppose, is why people talk about Babe Ruth all the time.

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