Ruppert inherited the brewing company from his father, and in 1915, just before Prohibition, he became the company's president. Before that, he had been elected to Congress in 1898. He served in Congress four different terms.
Ruppert served in the National Guard as colonel only for a short period of time. Despite this, people commonly called him Colonel Ruppert instead of Congressman Ruppert, which may have been a more appropiate title for people to call him.
Ruppert adquired the Yankees in 1914, and he brought over Babe Ruth in 1919. The Yankees then dominated baseball throught a good portion of the 1920s and 1930s, including the Murderer's Row team of 1927. A possibly apocryphal story holds that Ruppert is responsible for the Yankees' famous pinstriped uniforms; according to this account, Ruppert chose pinstripes in order to make the often-portly Ruth appear less obese.
Ruppert and Ruth were famous for their public disagreements about Ruth's contracts. Nevertheless, they were personal friends. According to Ruth, Ruppert called him Babe only once, and that was the night before he died. Ruth was one of the last persons to see Ruppert alive.