With the death of legendary actress Betty White on New Year’s Eve, there were tributes flowing in from all industries, illustrating the impact the 99-year-old White had on our society. One baseball-focused Twitter page, however, had an interesting spin on White’s longevity.
The crazy statistic linking New York Yankees legend Babe Ruth and Hollywood legend Betty White
White passed away just days before her 100th birthday, which would have been celebrated on January 17, 2022. With the Hollywood legend being born on January 17, 1922, her birth occurred before Major League Baseball legend Babe Ruth was entering his third season with the New York Yankees after suiting up for six seasons with the Boston Red Sox.
Including the 1922 season, Ruth would still play 14 more years, finishing his Hall of Fame career with 714 home runs, making him MLB’s home run king until he was surpassed by Hank Aaron on April 8, 1974. One Twitter site made the correlation between White’s birth and Ruth’s penchant for hitting long balls.
Babe Ruth hit 552 home runs after Betty White was born. https://t.co/hpGby35QT3
— Codify (@CodifyBaseball) December 31, 2021
Now certainly there are plenty of people who pointed out that Barry Bonds hit all 762 of his home runs after White was born and other statements explaining that plenty had happened in the baseball world since White’s birth. However, the intersection of White’s birth and Ruth’s rise as the Sultan of Swat was an interesting note to read.
So what else can be tied in with that first season (1922) after White’s birth? The Yankees (94-60) did edge out the New York Giants (93-61-2) for the regular season title, but the Giants would beat the Yankees in five games to win the World Series. The Yankees never won a game in the World Series, but did end up tying the Giants 3-3 in 10 innings in Game 2.
Ruth did not hit a home run in that series and drove in just one run while going 2-for-17 (.118) at the plate.
While the world mourned the passing of White, connecting her to a baseball icon in a unique way was also a moment where fans could be reminded once again just how long White has been a part of our world.