A baseball bat that could be the one Babe Ruth used to hit his 1932 “Called Shot” is selling online at Lelands.
During Game 3 of the 1932 World Series against the Chicago Cubs, Ruth stepped up to the plate and twice pointed towards centre-field.
The next pitch was blasted over the bleachers, one of the Yankee legend’s greatest ever home runs.
The meaning behind the gesture has been fiercely debated. The Cubs were said to have been trash talking Ruth from the opposing benches. Was he returning the favour?
The moment would probably never have received the level of attention it did had it not been for sports journalist Joe Williams, who wrote in the New York World Telegram: "In the fifth, with the Cubs riding him unmercifully from the bench, Ruth pointed to center and punched a screaming liner to a spot where no ball had been hit before."
Ruth, a shameless self-promoter, would later confirm the story. He said: "Well, I looked out at center field and pointed. I said, ‘I’m gonna hit the next pitch right past the flagpole!
“…As I hit the ball, every muscle in my system, every sense I had, told me that I had never hit a better one, that as long as I lived nothing would ever feel as good as this one."
While there’s no specific evidence linking this bat to the event, we know Ruth used a 1932 bat to hit that home run.
Lelands comments: “Further evidence comes in the form of a carved, vintage arrow pointing to the deepest, hardest hit ball mark on the barrel of the bat. Ruth is known for the unique habit of making notches on his bats denoting important home runs, so this arrow could be pointing, like Ruth’s called shot itself, to a home run of particular significance.”
Bidding is already at $177,156. The record for a Babe Ruth bat is $1.2m, set for the one he used to hit the first home run at the new Yankee Stadium in 1923.