The Ruth Family has shared a very cool piece of memorabilia with BRC to show to its fans. It’s a letter from Ty Cobb to the Babe dated November 19, 1947, a point in time in which Ruth was regularly in and out of the hospital for treatment of his cancer. For those less familiar with the story and relationship of Babe Ruth and Ty Cobb, it was actually a fairly interesting one. Tom Stanton, a friend of BabeRuthCentral.com, described their relationship in detail in his book, “Ty and The Babe”, as being very much a “hate-love” relationship. Ty Cobb was the fiercest of competitors during his years in baseball and was known for his relentless use of physical and psychological tactics to win a game. In addition, as an icon of the dead ball era, Ty Cobb was infuriated with Babe’s style of play – focused less on base hits and steals and more on his next home run. Ty’s animosity towards Babe got to Ruth to some degree and during their 14 years shared in the league, they did not care much for each other at all.
Later in life, their shared love of golf allowed their original hostility as “enemies on the ballfield”, to be replaced with a true friendship and admiration for each other’s talents as baseball gods. What makes the below letter so special, is that it is somewhat of a admission by Cobb regarding his determination to win at all costs on the ballfield, at the same time, recognizing what a great player Babe was, not only at the plate, but also for his fielding and baseball acumen. Truly a great piece of baseball history and a great baseball story.