Babe Ruth’s First Professional Game; Plays Shortstop for the Orioles

This is a cool old baseball photo. It’s the 1913 Baltimore Orioles with Babe Ruth, pictured on the right.

1913 Baltimore Orioles
1913 Baltimore Orioles

We did a little more digging and it appears (according to Wikipedia) that Ruth didn’t sign with Jack Dunn’s Orioles until 1914. Here’s the first story we could find on Ruth from 1914 in the Baltimore Sun, and it’s interesting to note, that this was his first professional baseball game. It was printed on March 8th.

Fayetteville, N. C., March 7.–George Ruth, a pitcher Jack Dunn picked off the lots of Baltimore, is credited with making the longest hit ever seen by Fayetteville fans. In the Oriole’s first game of the season this afternoon, with Cottreil on second base, the youngster landed on a fast ball and circled the bases before Billy Morrisette had picked it up in deep right field.

Jim Thorpe, the famous Indian athlete, now a member of the New York Giants, held the previous record. Local fans who watched the Birds play their seven-inning contest are confident Ruth’s hit was much longer than that made by Thorpe. The ball went far over Morrisette’s head and landed in a cornfield. The battle of the Buzzards and Sparrows resulted in a 15 to 9 victory for the former, and Ruth’s batting featured. He made two hits and scored as many runs. The pitcher played shortstop well, handling the three chances without a slip-up.

Ruth learned to play ball at St. Mary’s Industrial School and can play any position. He pitched the last inning of today’s contest, and while one run was scored during his stay on the mound, he had little difficulty in disposing of the batters. The youngster is left-handed, has plenty of speed and can bat from either side of the plate.

Below is the box score from the game. Pretty interesting that the Babe played shortstop.

March 7th, 1914 box score
March 7th, 1914 box score

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