The Louisville Slugger Museum and Bat Factory is partnering with Ripley’s Believe It or Not! to display Oddball, a first-of-its-kind baseball exhibition.
As to be expected, Oddball is not the traditional the baseball history display. Among the items included are a replica of Yankee Stadium made of toothpicks, a Hank Aaron sculpture carved out of Oh Henry! candy bars, and Ripley-style artwork that is unique to all 30 major league teams. For example, the Cincinnati Reds will be represented by a portrait of Pete Rose that is painted on rose petals.
“The entertainment factor is off-the-charts with this amazing show,” said Anne Jewell, VP and Executive Director of Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, “Ripley’s spin on baseball is full of fun and surprises. We’re thrilled to collaborate on this first-of-its-kind exhibition with one of the greatest icons in the world of entertainment.”
Ripley’s Believe It or Not! founder Robert Ripley was himself a baseball player. He participated in semi-professional baseball while also working as a cartoonist from 1908-1912. In 1913, Ripley received a tryout with the New York Giants, only to suffer an arm injury. Though that ended any ambition he may have had for playing at the major league level, Ripley never lost interest in the game, and formed a team in 1939 to raise money for charity that included the likes of Babe Ruth and Walter Johnson.
“Ripley was a lot of things: Writer, explorer, movie star, radio personality but first and foremost he was a sports-loving cartoonist,” said Edward Meyer, Ripley’s VP of Exhibits and Archives, “His original baseball drawings capture the sense of motion and detailed realism that were the hallmark of his art style.”
The exhibit is already underway, and will be on display through January 8, 2017.