Babe Ruth was sold to the Yankees in a secret meeting on the day after Christmas in 1919
Sox secretly sold Ruth to Yanks on 12/26/1919
In the winter of 1919-20, pitcher/outfielder Babe Ruth was coming off an age-24 season that looked like this: .322/.456/.657 with an MLB-best 29 home runs, an MLB-best 113 RBIs and, oh yeah, 12 complete games, a 2.97 ERA nine wins and a save in 17 pitching appearances for the Red Sox.
The problem, though, was that the Sox finished in sixth place despite all of those staggering figures. So, even though Ruth was a part of three World Series championship teams for the Sox in the early 20th century, Sox owner Harry Frazee sold The Sultan of Swat to the Bronx Bombers in a secret meeting on Dec. 26, 1919.
The deal wouldn't be announced until early 1920, and in the ensuing season, Ruth exploded for 54 dingers and posted the first double-digit WAR mark of his illustrious career. Ruth would lead all of MLB in homers in nine of the next 12 seasons, helping the Yankees to the first four of the franchise's impressive 27 World Series championships.
Infamously, the Sox would not win a Fall Classic without Ruth until 2004. It would ultimately be a flurry of David Ortiz homers, Curt Schilling's bloody sock and a Dave Roberts steal that broke the Curse of the Bambino that haunted Fenway Park and all of Boston, really, for 86 eternal seasons.
But, hey, without it, we might not have "Fever Pitch." So, all's well that ends well, right? Right?!?!