EL REY DE BASEBALL | ROBERTO CLEMENTE

From the desk of Contributing Editor, Eli M. Getson–

Roberto Clemente is, was, and will always be the standard that all Latino ball players will be measured against.  He and Lou Gehrig are the only players to have the five year Hall of Fame waiting period waived so they could gain immediate entry.  A legendary baseball player– the classic five tool guy, but he also was someone who rose above sports– his selflessness and dedication to help other human beings transcended baseball, and lifted all people regardless of color, creed, or religion.   He was a trailblazer for Latin players who carried himself with grace & dignity– and possessed a fierce will to excel.

July 1966, PA — Pittsburgh Pirates Outfielder Roberto Clemente — Image by © Bettmann/Corbis

Nothing was as breath taking as watching Clemente’s batting helmet fly off as he legged out a triple after clubbing the ball into the gap or watching one of his defensive gems in old Forbes Field.  Most will never forget the fact that his 3,000th hit was achieved at his last at bat– almost as if the fates knew he would not be among us much longer.

Sept 30th, 1972 — Roberto Clemente made his 3,000 hit. Doug Harvey, umpire, is shown handing him the ball on the field. — Image by © Bettmann/Corbis

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THE GREAT BABE RUTH | THE BIGGER THEY ARE, THE HARDER THEY FALL

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“Some 20 years ago, I stopped talking about the Babe for the simple reason that I realized that those who had never seen him didn’t believe me.”

— sportswriter Tommy Holmes

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Simply put, Baseball’s biggest legend.  Ever.  Not just a great baseball player– the great Bambino was also an all-around avid sportsman, outdoorsman, notorious _______, drinker, and most of all, one helluva natty dresser.  Some great candid shots of the Babe after the jump.

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Babe Ruth clutching his bat, and ready for action -- June 4th, 1920.

Babe Ruth clutching his bat, and ready for action -- June 4th, 1920.

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It was not uncommon for Ruth to knock the cover off of the ball at Griffith Stadium, what was uncommon was the day Griffith Stadium knocked out the great Babe Ruth. On July 5, 1924 the Washington Senators first baseman Joe Judge hit a fly ball to right field, Ruth ran as hard as he could after the ball that was slicing foul, before Ruth got to the ball he got knocked out when he ran into the concrete wall. There he was the Great Bambino knocked out cold for five minutes. The Babe recovers after Yankees’ trainer Doc Woods pours some cold water on his face. The next day in the top of 8th inning Ruth gets his revenge when he hits his 22nd home run of the season off of Senators’ pitcher Joe Martina.

–Mark Hornbaker

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(Babe) Ruth Knocked Out

(Babe) "Ruth Knocked Out" in a game against the Washington Senators -- July 5th, 1924.

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