LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A big star kicked off an exciting weekend for Louisville Slugger Museum as Baltimore Orioles great Cal Ripken Jr. received the 2013 Living Legend Award.
The Hall of Famer visited the bat factory before getting the award and Baseball's Iron Man said it's actually his second time to see the process of making the bats.
He got up close and personal with the Louisville Slugger and bat factory employees telling us, it's the first bat he picked up and used. The Louisville Slugger P72 model was what he took to the plate the majority of his 21-year career.
During his visit museum officials showed Ripken was the original contract he signed with Louisville Slugger when he was just 18-years-old. They also showed him his father's original contract when he was 26. Ripken, who may be best known as the man who broke Lou Gehrig's Major League record for consecutive games received the Living Legend award Friday night.
Ripken was presented a gold and diamond ring, the quote inside? "Make your mark on this world," something Ripken has certainly done.
"This is quite an honor," Ripken said, "I always had a great relationship with Louisville Slugger and us baseball guys are pretty superstitious about what you put in your hands and so when something works, you are very particular about how it's made and how you make your living, so it was the right tool for me."
Another living legend was also honored at Louisville Slugger Friday night. Pittsburgh Pirates Hall of Famer Bill Mazeroski, who has several items from his personal collection in the 10th Annual Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory Auction Saturday morning, was presented a set of PowerBilt Golf Clubs.
Ripken hit a lot of topics, from what he misses most in Major Leaque Baseball to the question that keeps coming back: Will he return to the game in some way? He says he's getting the itch and maybe he'll show back up in operations or management.