After losing the 1921 and ’22 World Series to their nearby rivals, the New York Yankees were determined to make good on the “third time’s the charm” adage in 1923. The franchise had become a major attraction, with slugger Babe Ruth attracting big crowds to the newly built Yankee Stadium.
The young slugger had christened New York’s new baseball palace with an Opening Day homer back in April. On October 15, 1923, with the Yanks leading the Giants three games to two in the World Series, Ruth started the Game 6 scoring with his third bomb of the week.
An image of Babe Ruth floating across home plate after the homer at the Polo Grounds that day is now on the block at RMY Auctions. It’s one of hundreds of historic photos in the the company’s current auction, which is set to close this weekend.
The dated caption is still attached to the back of the 6 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ photo from Underwood & Underwood. RMY calls it “one of the most historically significant images of Ruth we have handled.”
In the photo, Ruth is shown as he’s about to be greeted by bat boy Eddie Bennett. It was a solo shot off Giants pitcher Art Nehf but the 1-0 lead didn’t last. The Giants rallied to grab a 4-1 lead that afternoon before the Yankees rallied for five runs in the eighth inning in front of a crowd of over 34,000 fans, winning 6-4 to capture the first of their 27 championships. Bob Meusel’s single drove in two with a third run scoring on an error. Herb Pennock and Sam Jones did the pitching for the Yanks in a game that wrapped up in a tidy 2 hours and 5 minutes despite the ten run combined output.
Ruth was the unquestioned star of the series, batting .368 with those three homers for punctuation.