New exhibit scores a home run


Field Museum opens "Baseball As America"

Photo: Courtesy of the Field Museum

Baseball great Babe Ruth swings a heavy bat for a heavy hitting record.

The "Baseball As America" exhibit at the Field Museum is the third best exhibit I have seen there, after the mummies and the dinosaurs. It isn’t easy to get to right now because of all the construction. You sometimes have to park more than a mile away and either walk (I walked) or wait for a shuttle bus, and either way you get cold. But once you’re there, there’s a lot to see. I went into the exhibit after stopping at the stuffed elephant downstairs and the first thing I saw was two chairs from the old Comiskey Park. It would have been better if you could sit in them but it was nice to look at them and think about the people who sat in them over all those years, maybe even my mom or dad. There are a lot of history exhibits showing how baseball has changed—pictures and old baseball gloves and baseballs used by baseball stars from a long time ago, and even the first catcher’s mask. I had learned in school about Jackie Robinson and how he broke the color barrier, and there was a special exhibit for him. The best part is where you get to practice pitching grips on baseballs, with instructions on how to grip for different pitches. You also get to hold replicas of bats used by players like Babe Ruth. What surprised me was how heavy the bats are-a lot heavier than the ones I use in Oak Park Youth Baseball. There is a gift shop at the end, with a lot of interesting things—baseball chess, baseball books, baseball clothes, baseball pencils, even baseball jewelry—but it’s a little expensive. I really recommend the exhibit if you like baseball. But you should save time to go see the mummies and dinosaurs after that. The exhibit runs through July 20, and requires a special ticket that, combined with museum admission, costs $15 adults, $10 seniors and $7 for children ages 3-11. For information, call (312) 922-9410 or visit


-- Zachary Smith, 10, Oak Park


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