John Paul Stevens, a Lifelong Cubs Fan, Saw Babe Ruth Call His Shot at ’32 World Series

The progressive Supreme Court Justice passed away Tuesday. He was 99.

Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens points as he recounts his story of witnessing Babe Ruth call his home run. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens points as he recounts his story of witnessing Babe Ruth call his home run. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
By Evan Bleier / July 17, 2019 9:31 am

Before serving on the highest court in the United States for nearly 45 years, former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens did many things.

One of them? Watching Babe Ruth call his shot before hitting a home run into the seats at Wrigley Field during Game 3 of the 1932 World Series. “Very definitely. He pointed his bat,” Stevens told the Associated Press.

The homer was part of a 7-5 Yankees win during a World Series that New York won in a clean sweep. It was the final World Series that Ruth played in.

A diehard Cubs fan who was born on the South Side and attended the first World Series game ever played at Wrigley in 1929 at age nine, Stevens died on Tuesday at a hospital in Fort Lauderdale at the age of 99.

“People have criticized me because I’m a Cubs fan from the South Side, but the White Sox were really not a powerful team in those days, while the Cubs were contenders every year,” Stevens told the Chicago Tribune in 2016. The Cubs, of course, went on to win the World Series that year over the Cleveland Indians.

When Justice Stevens retired in 2010 at the age of 90, he was the second oldest and second longest-serving justice ever to sit on the court.

“He brought to our bench an inimitable blend of kindness, humility, wisdom and independence. His unrelenting commitment to justice has left us a better nation,” Chief Justice John Roberts said in a statement.

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