BOB LeMOINE lives in New Hampshire, where he works as a high school librarian and adjunct professor for White Mountains Community College and Emporia State University.
His love of baseball started at a very early age. He has fond memories of sitting under his covers at night, listening to his small transistor radio, cheering his beloved Boston Red Sox on (until he fell asleep). As he grew older, his love of baseball became deeper, propelling him into the realm of research. Especially fascinated with Boston and 19th-century baseball history, Bob has contributed to several SABR book projects, leading him to writing a book of his own! Inspired by Ned Martin on his black-and-white TV, Bob wanted to be a Red Sox announcer when he grew up. Instead, he settled for Martin being the subject of his first, of many SABR biographies.
Over the last decade, he has contributed to many of SABR’s published biographies, articles, journal articles, and research topics. In 2016, he was a co-editor with Bill Nowlin on Boston’s First Nine: The 1871–75 Boston Red Stockings, with a follow up in 2019 with The Glorious Beaneaters of the 1890s.
Babe Ruth was 40 and flabby in 1935. His days as a strapping, fearsome home run hitter had passed him by. The game, which flourished into a big business through Ruth’s swing and swag, decided it didn’t need him anymore. Ruth’s ultimate dream was to become a manager, but the New York Yankees, the dynasty he built, wasn’t interested. For the first time since being a troubled boy in Baltimore, Ruth felt unwelcomed and unwanted. But somebody needed him.
Judge Emil Fuchs was the luckless president of the Boston Braves. He became a prominent New York City lawyer, then lost his fortune on his perpetual losing team. By 1935, Fuchs was desperate to save his club from financial collapse. He needed Babe Ruth, not the fading home run hitter, but the most famous brand on the planet.
Ruth and Fuchs partnered during a perplexing 1935 season with the 38-115 Boston Braves, one of the truly worst teams in baseball history. They experienced desperation, hope, and collapse, but each continued to give back to the game they loved.
Discover this mostly unexplored Babe Ruth, from his final games to his death and lasting legacy.
“By virtue of his extensive research, Bob LeMoine shows that Babe Ruth’s return to Boston with the Braves in 1935, as with the Bambino’s 1919 departure from the Red Sox, arguably ‘cursed’ both of the Hub’s major league franchises. As well documented by the author, the past-his- prime ailing slugger was lured back by the machinations of Tribe owner Fuchs to bolster gate receipts in a desperate attempt to save his financially moribund regime. The scheme quickly failed as Ruth abruptly retired, ultimately forcing Fuchs to surrender the team to creditors while Boston’s National League fans suffered through one of the worst home team performances in big league history. LeMoine adeptly details the key on- and off-the-field events of that fateful season and of the legacies of Ruth and Fuchs.”—Bob Brady, President of the Boston Braves Historical Association
“This book took me by surprise. Bob LeMoine’s book on the denouement of one of baseball’s (and America’s) pre-eminent legends evoked emotions of both sympathy and pathos. He tells the story of Babe Ruth’s final years in a way I felt previous books had not plumbed nearly as well. His account felt revelatory, and full of detail. In the process of exploring The Babe’s final years, LeMoine tells the story of an era of Boston baseball history—the Braves, as they struggled through the Depression years—that also felt new to me, particularly in following the efforts of Judge Emil Fuchs to try and save a team for which he cared so deeply.”—Bill Nowlin, baseball historian and author of more than 50 Boston baseball books, including Tom Yawkey: Patriarch of the Boston Red Sox, Mr. Red Sox: The Johnny Pesky Story, Fenway Park at 100, and Ted Williams: The Pursuit of Perfection
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