Preston: Never let the truth get in the way of a good story, Sammy Vick

From SABR member J.G. Preston at The J.G. Preston Experience on February 18, 2013:

I’m finally getting around to reading Leigh Montville‘s 2006 biography of Babe Ruth, “The Big Bam.” This passage, beginning on page 115 of the hardcover edition, jumped out at me:

“My greatest moment during the season came one day with the bases loaded, the score tied, and Babe’s turn to bat,” Sam Vick said. “The height of ambition of the fans was to see such a setup. They were almost taking the top off the stand. There was a lull in the game, and Babe did not climb out of the dugout. He had hurt his wrist and couldn’t go up to bat.”

“I then blacked out and don’t remember anything until I slid into third base with a triple.”

Or did you, Sammy Vick?

It’s easy to see why Montville would include such a richly-told anecdote (although it’s really a story about Vick and not about the Babe). But for all its detail, several key facts were missing, such as when the game took place, or where, or who the opponent was.

Turns out it was pretty hard to include those details when the incident in question never happened. Not even close.

Read the full article here:

Originally published: February 28, 2013. Last Updated: February 28, 2013.