Monday, September 24, 2012

Babe Hamlin

Hamlin replays Ruth's guarantee
Was Denny Hamlin’s win at New Hampshire worthy of Ruthian comparisons?

Well not quite, but it was close.

After a botched pit stop cost him any chance of a win at Chicago, Hamlin predicted victory at New Hampshire.  It came just one week before the 80th anniversary of the Babe’s called shot, which took place during the third game of the 1932 World Series. 

As the story goes, Ruth was being heckled by the Chicago Cub players and fans during the game, even though he’d already hit a home run earlier.  After taking a couple of strikes, Ruth gestured towards the outfield before the next pitch.  The pitch landed in the bleachers.

Not even a botched qualifying effort that saw him start 28th could keep Hamlin from fulfilling his promise at New Hampshire.  He moved into the lead on lap 93 and led 193 of the 200 laps.  Not even a trio of debris cautions could keep it close.

Afterwards, Hamlin played to the Ruth comparison, replaying the Bambino pointing out where he would deposit the next pitch, right down to the left-handed batting stance.  Then he downplayed Ruthian comparisons.

“There were many people that called their shot with championships ahead of me, so I'm just a small, small little bug on the windshield,” he said.

The Yankees went on to sweep the Series.  It won’t be as easy for Hamlin.  He trails Jimmie Johnson and Brad Keselowski in the standings.   Next up is Dover, where Johnson has won four of the last seven races.  Hamlin, on the other hand, hasn’t finished in the top 15 since the car of tomorrow was introduced.

Finally, thanks Jeff, for shaving the ‘stache.  Although it might be too late.  He finished third at New Hampshire, but picked up just three points on the Johnson.

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