The New York Yankees and the Cleveland Indians were playing a ball game in Cleveland on August 11, 1929. In the game Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig hit home runs. For Gehrig it was his 27th of the season. For Ruth it was his 500th in his career, becoming the first person to reach a career mark of 500.
Both Home Runs were solo shots. For Gehrig it was his only hit of the game. Ruth went 2 for 4 that day, scoring 2.
Even with their home runs, the Yankees lost that day by a score of 6 – 5. Cleveland’s pitcher Willis Hudlin pitched a complete game.
Once when asked if he had a superstition Ruth said, “Just one. Whenever I hit a home run, I make certain I touch all four bases.”
Ruth’s home run was hit out of the ballpark onto Lexington Avenue. Upon hearing Ruth say that he would have liked to have the ball Detective H.C. Folger went to look for it. He found the boy who had it, bringing him to Ruth. The ball was exchanged for an autograph and a 20 dollar bill.
1929 was the first year in which the Yankees began to use uniform numbers regularly. They were the first team to do so, although in 1916 the Cleveland Indians used number briefly. Since Ruth batted 3rd in the lineup, he was issued assigned number 3.