Showing posts with label Baseball Museums. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Baseball Museums. Show all posts

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Big Leagues, Little Bricks LEGO exhibit at Louisville Slugger Museum

 Earlier this month Dad and I were driving through Louisville and noticed a billboard for a LEGO exhibit at the Louisville Slugger Museum.  The Big Leagues, Little Bricks exhibit requires admission to the Lousiville Slugger Museum, which also includes the factory tour, but since we have done that twice before and did not want to add to much more time to our travel day we just saw the exhibit and the shop (had to get a new figure for Mik's mini ballplayer collection!).

The exhibit features models of several ballparks at different scales.  The largest model is of Wrigley Field.  The other ballpark models include Miller Park and PNC Park.

Big Leagues, Little Bricks LEGO exhibit at Louisville Slugger Museum

The exhibit also featured some LEGO murals.  My favorite was the one called Take Me Out to the Ball Game.  This features the lyrics raised as part of an image of a player at bat.  There were also murals of ballplayers.
Big Leagues, Little Bricks LEGO exhibit at Louisville Slugger Museum

One of the more interesting parts of the exhibit was a display of bats made out of different materials including cardboard, glass, and, of course, LEGOs.

Big Leagues, Little Bricks LEGO exhibit at Louisville Slugger Museum

The exhibit also features LEGO models of figures doing different baseball moves such as sliding, pitching, catching, and hitting.  There is also an area to build your own LEGO creations.

Big Leagues, Little Bricks LEGO exhibit at Louisville Slugger Museum

Friday, November 9, 2012

The Bobblehead Museum at Marlins Park

The Bobblehead Museum

The Bobblehead Museum is located inside Marlins Park.  It is on the main concourse near the home plate entrance.  It is a cool collection of bobbleheads from all MLB teams including many mascots, too.

The Bobblehead Museum

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Baseball's Gateway to the West Exhibit at the Arch

In St. Louis this week I was sad to miss there being a game in town by a day, especially since the Cubs were coming to town the next day. However, I still ended up happening upon the Baseball Gateway to the West exhibit. The exhibit is in the Museum of Westward Expansion, which is in the visitor's center under the Arch. Access to this museum is free, as they only charge if you want to see a movie or take a tram up to the top of the Arch.

The exhibit is pretty interesting, although I didn't get a chance to really explore it due to chasing little ones around being the first priority this trip. The exhibit was basically a sort of history of baseball in St. Louis and I assume it led to the conclusion that St. Louis playing a roll in baseball spreading to the Western USA. There was some cool stuff on display such as World Series memorabilia, uniforms, and baseballs. They had a fun display with baseballs and marks to show how the ball is held to throw different pitches. There was also a Knothole wall similar to the one in the Cactus League exhibit. Not as cool as the old Cardinals Hall of Fame that was housed with the International Bowling Hall of Fame across from Busch Stadium, but still a nicely put together little exhibit. Unfortunately, the exhibit is only temporary, but it does go until October 31, 2010.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Baseball Museum 19: Ted Williams Museum/Hitters Hall of Fame

Back on July 27, 2009, as part of going to the Tampa Bay Rays game at Tropicana Field we visited our 19th and final Baseball museum of the trip, the Ted Williams Museum/Hitters Hall of Fame. This museum once had its own home, but it could not keep in operation financially, so it is now inside Tropicana Field as part of the attractions. Because it was once on its own, it is quite a large collection and not very small like the Yankee Museum. It is even bigger than the Braves Hall of Fame. Also, it is free to visit on game days, although the gates open only 1 and a half before the game and this did easily take 45 minutes of our pre game time in the park. In case you are wondering why it is located at the Rays and thinking he never played or had any ties to the team, this is the area he retired to and in fact he threw out the first ceremonial first pitch in Rays history.

The museum begins with a few displays on the first floor. The displays include a Babe Ruth ball that is the only one Ted Williams ever asked for and was stolen and lost for over 25 years. They also have some random displays on things like the Negro Leagues, 500 home run club, woman’s baseball and the Rockford Peaches, Baseball Movies (even a Field of Dreams sign autographed by Ted Williams), and Ted Williams the Outdoorsman. It is kind of the hodge podge of stuff in the collection, but it is still mostly tied into fitting in the Ted Williams museum because it is a lot of memorabilia he collected over the years, autographed by him, or autographed to him.

The real museum, though, begins up the steps on the second floor. I honestly thought it was just a small hall of fame for the Hitters Hall of Fame when we began up the stairs, but was surprised to find that the upstairs is twice as large as the second with it mostly being about Ted Williams life and baseball career. I am not sure how you get up here with a wheelchair, as Mik did not want to go upstairs, but I imagine somehow one of the Tropicana Field elevators can get you access to this level and part of the museum, as it really is the bulk of what there is to see.

The Ted Williams part of the upstairs has items from his life from early baseball career in college to his time in the US Marine Corps to his Major League Baseball career and beyond. A lot of the displays include commemorative bats about the different parts of his career. Of course, there are also some actual bats he used. There is plenty to see and many signs to read about each display and the part of his life it is about, although due to wanting to get to our seats before the game started we kind of rushed through it. It is kind of sad that they do not open the park earlier because this museum would have been great to have been able to linger in and at the same time not miss any of the game. With it being in an indoor stadium there is not even ever the chance you could further explore it because of a rain delay.

The last part of the museum is called the Hitters Hall of Fame. This Hall of Fame features a variety of players including some that are actual National Baseball Hall of Fame members and some that are still current players. There is also a lot of lesser known/those that are not playing anymore and have not made it to the Hall of Fame. For each player they had a good size display of memorabilia related to them. It is so much different than the other Hall of Fames, as they actually have a display for every player in it and at least for now each player seems to still have their whole display still on view. It is not like there are only a few in it, either, but there has got to be at least 40.

Overall the Ted Williams Museum/Hitters Hall of Fame was an impressive museum/hall of fame. I just really felt like I was not able to pay that much attention to everything and really take it all in due to the limited time to see it before the game. It is a shame that they do not open the park earlier, but at least this museum does still exist and has not entirely disappeared, which very well could have happened, as it used to be in its own building in Hernando, Florida.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Baseball Museum 18: Legends of the Game Museum

On July 23, 2009, before leaving Arlington, Texas, we went back to the Rangers Ballpark at Arlington in order to see the Legends of the Game museum they have inside the ballpark. The museum has three levels to it and is actually got a good amount to see, however, a big portion of it is just stuff from the Cooperstown National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum collection and seems to be a lot of lesser known players with not enough info to understand why they put the person’s stuff on display other than they did play professional baseball. Come on I got to imagine they can come up with one interesting stat or thing each player has done even if it is not record breaking or overall historically important.

The first floor of the Legends of the Game Museum was mostly things on loan from the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. There is also a small theater area that honors Sammy Sosa hitting his 600th Home Run at Rangers Ballpark at Arlington, which was a game that he was a Texas Ranger in against his old team the Chicago Cubs. They have several items on display from this historical game including a base and the line up card. The video of his home run and the celebration afterwards continuously plays in this area. One of the walls also honors the other members of the 600 Home Run Club.

Personally I found a lot of the Hall of Fame stuff on the first floor boring. It is basically just like visiting Cooperstown, but it does not have the history of baseball or the actual hall of fame plaques that are the main things good about the real Hall of Fame. It is not bad if you cannot get to Cooperstown, but it is kind of boring after having seen Cooperstown. They do have a few interesting things, though, such as an original ticket booth from the Polo Grounds in New York City and Babe Ruth’s 1921 King of Swat trophy. They also actually have some items used in the Negro Leagues to look at, which is the opposite if Cooperstown, which does have a whole room devoted to the Negro Leagues, but does not have much in terms of artifacts on display. Thus I guess in some ways this place is better, but it also has its out of date flaws like the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

The biggest of the errors is that they have at least two places with North America maps with dots where the 30 Major League Baseball teams are located. Well, the map is at least 5 years out of date because it still lists the Montreal Expos as being current and not having moved to D.C. to become the Washington Nationals. The error about their not currently being a team in D.C. is also in the second floor exhibits about the Washington Senators moving to the Rangers and saying that no team has been in D.C. since. Being a Nationals fan I found it pretty insulting that they basically still ignore it existing and are too lazy to at least put a post it fixing the errors. It sure was tempting to get a Sharpie and mark the Nationals on their giant map.

Despite the errors in information related to baseball in D.C. I did enjoy the second floor. It has displays that basically tell the history of the Texas Rangers. They may ignore that there is currently a team in D.C., but at least they do not ignore that their team history begins as them being the second Washington Senators team that began after the first Senators left to become the Minnesota Twins. Of course, it is still mostly about the team’s time in Texas, but that is understandably how it should be since it is in the Texas Rangers ballpark. Also, as expected one of the bigger displays is devoted to Nolan Ryan, who finished his career with the Rangers.

The second floor has more than just displays about the Rangers organization. One of the areas shows the history of baseball in the state of Texas mostly focusing on the Texas League. They also have a ballpark exhibit that includes a look at the building of the Rangers Ballpark at Arlington with models of the stadium. They also have parts from other ballparks as part of the things they have from Cooperstown. This includes lockers from the old Crosley Field in Cincinnati and seats from around 10 old ballparks, such as the Polo Grounds in New York City, Cleveland Municipal Stadium, and Tiger Stadium.

The final part of the museum is an interactive exhibit area. Here you can get the feel of what it is like to catch a ball thrown by Nolan Ryan. This is just like the one at the Nolan Ryan Exhibit Center, but Dad and Mik missed that part, so they both tried it here. There is also several areas that quiz on different subjects and use baseball to help teach the different subjects, such as Math, Science, and Geography. Mik really enjoyed catching the ball from Nolan Ryan thing, which was nicely wheelchair accessible to roll up to.

Overall the Legends of the Game Museum was interesting, but the first floor was kind of a dull repeat of part of what we already saw a Cooperstown. The second floor was definitely the best part with the history of the Rangers and some things from various ballparks. The third floor is also kind of cool with the interactive things. Note the museum is accessible, but you will have to ask for help finding and using the elevator, since it is hidden and also does not always drop you off directly in the museum and it can be confusing to find your way back into the museum without help. I still do not like that they ignore the Nationals existing, but it is accessible and it was still worth seeing.