Ruth vs Williams: Hitting

Babe_Ruth

Sultan of Swat
Staff member
V.I.P.
#1
These two players are considered the best hitters of all time.

Who do you guys believe was the better hitter between the two?

Please give an explanation.

Discuss.
 
#2
On paper, Ruth has the advantage. He has almost 700 more at bats, and leads Williams in adjusted ops+ by 16 points, 207 to 191.

That gap could be closed up with arguments about league quality, in that Williams played in a much better, and competitive league than Ruth did. I don't know if that is true, so for now at least, I'd say that Ruth was better.
 

salsanchezfan

Registered Member
#3
Ruth. The man had such a scary combination of average and power that was unmatched, save for a roided up Barry Bonds. Williams was more line drive, but had better bat control, while Ruth, even by his own admision, swung as hard as he could no matter what the count. He rarely ever struck ou, which only adds to his hitting prowess.
 

Babe_Ruth

Sultan of Swat
Staff member
V.I.P.
#4
would have to say Babe Ruth was the overall better hitter. He showed that he could hit for power with his 714 Career Home Runs, even though Ted Williams lost prime years due to war.

He had a .342 career batting average which is only .002 points behind Ted Williams. Babe hit a homer 8.5% of the time and Ted hit a homer ever 6.76% of the time. Also, Babe led in slugging average with a .690 over Ted's .634. Babe is a better hitter that Ted Williams in my opinion, when you compare there offensive games.
 

Wade8813

Registered Member
#5
Hard to say.

Williams missed time due to the wars (which I don't hold against him), and IIRC, being a lefty in Fenway hurt him too (I believe there were rumors of trading him for DiMaggio, in part because DiMag would have done better in Fenway, and Williams would have done better in Yankee stadium).

Williams also played in partially integrated leagues, which increases the league quality he had to play against.

That said, Ruth's power numbers were enough better that I think I'd give him the edge. He hit more homers than entire teams. Part of that was because they weren't really trying to hit homers, but that's still ridiculous.
 

SHOELESSJOE3

Registered Member
#6
Hard to say.

Williams missed time due to the wars (which I don't hold against him), and IIRC, being a lefty in Fenway hurt him too (I believe there were rumors of trading him for DiMaggio, in part because DiMag would have done better in Fenway, and Williams would have done better in Yankee stadium).

Williams also played in partially integrated leagues, which increases the league quality he had to play against.

That said, Ruth's power numbers were enough better that I think I'd give him the edge. He hit more homers than entire teams. Part of that was because they weren't really trying to hit homers, but that's still ridiculous.
Losing time in the war years did cost Ted. But Babe Ruth because of his start as a pitcher with low at bats, has only 693 more at bats than Ted. Not that much, a little bit more than a full season. Just dealing with the home run, Ruth has 193 more home runs than Ted which of course he could never match with those 693 more at bats. He would need another 4 or 5 seasons and around 2000 more at bats to catch Babe and then the discussion would be, what if Ruth had more at bats.

I think the Joe and Ted trade was with an eye more on Joe playing at Fenway, not so much Ted at Yankee Stadium. Yankee Stadium was far more difficult for RH hitters than Fenway was for LH hitters.
Ted joined the Bosox in 1939'
The year after he came to Boston some dimensions on the right side were made shorter.

------------------1939-------------1940
Right field----------332--------------304
Power alley RF-----405--------------381

None meant to take anything away from Ted, one of the greatest hitters ever. Give him those war years back and he would be near the top in home runs, EBH's, runs, RBI and some other career stats.

Don't know why, the Yankees did nothing for the right handed hitting Joe Dimaggio when he came into the game 1936, the left side at NY was murder on RH hitters.

LF----------------301
Short left---------402
Power alley LF----457
CF---------------461
It's a wonder he put up the numbers he did in those 13 seasons, 361 home runs only 148 at home and a career .579 slugging percentage.
That slugging is the 7th highest for the years 1936 to 2007.
For RH hitters he is tied for 3rd best.
 
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