He was the Sultan of Swat. The Caliph of Clout. The Wizard
of Whack. The Bambino. And simply, to his teammates, the Big Bam. From the
award-winning author of the New York
Times bestseller Ted Williams
comes the thoroughly original, definitively ambitious, and exhilaratingly
colorful biography of the largest legend ever to loom in baseball—and in the
history of organized sports.
Babe Ruth was more than baseball’s original superstar. For
eighty-five years, he has remained the sport’s reigning titan. He has been named
Athlete of the Century…more than once. But who was this large, loud, enigmatic
man? Why is so little known about his childhood, his private life, and his
inner thoughts? In The Big Bam, Leigh
Montville, whose recent New York Times
bestselling biography of Ted Williams garnered glowing reviews and offered an
exceptionally intimate look at Williams’s life, brings his trademark touch to this
groundbreaking, revelatory portrait of the Babe.
Based on newly discovered documents and interviews—including
pages from Ruth’s personal scrapbooks—The
Big Bam traces Ruth’s life from his bleak childhood in Baltimore to his
brash entrance into professional baseball, from Boston to New York and into the
record books as the world’s most explosive slugger and cultural luminary.
Montville explores every aspect of the man, paying particular attention to the
myths that have always surrounded him. Did he really hit the “called shot”
homer in the 1932 World Series? Were his home runs really “the farthest balls
ever hit” in countless ballparks around the country? Was he really part
black—making him the first African American professional baseball superstar?
And was Ruth the high-octane, womanizing, heavy-drinking “fatso” of legend…or
just a boyish, rudderless quasi-orphan who did, in fact, take his training and
personal conditioning quite seriously?
At a time when modern baseball is grappling with
hyper-inflated salaries, free agency, and assorted controversies, The Big Bam brings back the pure glory
days of the game. Leigh Montville operates at the peak of his abilities,
exploring Babe Ruth in a way that intimately, and poignantly, illuminates a
most remarkable figure. Download and start listening now!