In honor of the World Series this week, I’m doing yet another baseball themed post. First, go Cards! Second, how awesome is it that the two division winners both placed on our top 10 baseball cities? The match-up might have been a surprise but the fans definitely deserve it.
If you can’t make it to St. Louis or Arlington for the big games, why not give it a go at the Smithsonian? Smithsonian Magazine had a feature on some famous pieces of baseball history inside their museums.
National Museum of American History
Jackie Robinson and the Brooklyn Dodgers: Inside the National Museum of American History you’ll find the exhibit Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers. One of the items inside this exhibit is a baseball signed by Jackie Robinson and the Brooklyn Dodgers after winning the National League pennant in 1952. Jackie Robinson will forever be remembered for breaking down racial barriers on and off the field. In 1947, he was voted Rookie of the Year and during his time with the Dodgers he played in the World Series 6 times, winning once.
Hank Aaron: After hitting 755 homeruns, Hank Aaron smashed Babe Ruth’s prior career record. Hank Aaron donated his Milwaukee Brewers jersey that he wore for the last two years of his career to the National Museum of American History. You’ll find his jersey inside the Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers exhibit.
Roberto Clemente: Roberto Clemente is known in baseball for being a standout Puerto Rican player and a dedicated player. He was the 11th player in baseball to record 3000 career hits, won 12 Gold Gloves, and was the first Latin American inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. For the Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers exhibit he donated his batting helmet from his career with the Pirates.
Sandy Koufax: Inside the same Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers exhibit is Sandy Koufax’s glove. A Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodger, he consistently set pitching records and brought his team wins. He’s famously remembered for refusing to pitch Game 1 of the 1965 World Series because it fell on a Jewish holy day, but still managed to win the Series for his team and winning the World Series MVP award.
Babe Ruth: Babe Ruth hardly needs any introduction but I think the The Associated Press’ award of “Athlete of the Century” in 1999 sums it up nicely. Inside the Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers exhibit is a baseball signed by Babe Ruth and the 1926 New York Yankees.
Stan “The Man” Musial: I can’t hardly have a World Series post without mentioning Stan Musial’s bat that hit his 3000th career hit. Stan hit 22 seasons for the St. Louis Cardinals and was just recently awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his accomplishments in his lifetime.
Betsy Jochum: It might seem strange to see a woman’s name on here but I think some recognition should go to the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League players, like Jochum. Jochum was both a pitcher and an outfielder in the league and an excellent hitter. Her South Bend Blue Sox uniform is on display in the Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers exhibit.
Assorted Collections: The Sports: Breaking Records, Breaking Barriers exhibit also contains a 1923 Yankees ticket booth, Steve Richard Nicosia’s catching mask, Carl Yastrzemski’s batting helmet and decades of autographed baseballs.
National Portrait Gallery
Yogi Berra: Yogi Berra made 15 straight All-Star teams in his career as a Yankee before going on to manage both the Yankees and Mets. It should be no surprise that he was immortalized in bronze at the National Portrait Gallery. His bust is part of the museum’s Champions exhibit.
Ty Cobb: Inside the Champions exhibit is a painting of Ty Cobb for a 1916 issue of Baseball magazine. In 1936, Cobb was the first player inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Carlton Fisk: The Champions exhibit also holds an oil painting of Carlton Fisk, known for catching 2226 games in his career as both a Red Sox and a White Sox player.
Reggie Jackson: A post-season all-star, Jackson made it to 7 World Series in 8 years. He is captured in tempura for the Champions exhibit.
Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris: One of the first famous home run duels in history was between Mantle and Maris. While Maris ended up winning (and keeping that record until another duel in the 1990s) both players have been winners in the eyes of history books. Maris did earn himself a second single painting of him swinging for a home run with his record though.
Juan Marichal: Juan Marichal was the first Latin American player to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame via regular selection. As a pitcher he seemed familiar and dangerous with nearly every style of pitch. An acrylic painting of his windup is on display in the Champions exhibit.
Billy Martin: Billy Martin was both a player and a manager in baseball. While an average player, he earned himself a Manager of the Year title 3 times and got himself fired from the job almost as much. An oil painting of Martin gifted by Time Magazine is on display in the exhibit.
Robin Roberts: Roberts is a player known for consistency during his time playing for the volatile Phillies. His pitching heroics earned him an oil painting of his fierce determination.
Nolan Ryan: Ryan was a determined and skilled pitcher, pitching 7 no-hitters and 5714 strikeouts in his career. In 1999, he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame and his pitching was immortalized on canvas.
Casey Stengel: Stengel is a manager partly responsible for the Yankee’s ruthless reputation. He led the New York Yankees to ten American League pennants and seven World Series championships in just twelve seasons. Then he turned the Mets from hopeless into dangerous. His career earned him a bronze sculpture.