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IronBirds to host big weekend, including Ripken's end to games played streak

Cal Ripken Jr., will be among the honored this weekend as the Aberdeen IronBirds celebrate an Maryland Sports Weekend at Leidos Field at Ripken Stadium.
Cal Ripken Jr., will be among the honored this weekend as the Aberdeen IronBirds celebrate an Maryland Sports Weekend at Leidos Field at Ripken Stadium. (Karl Merton Ferron / Baltimore Sun)

As part of the the Aberdeen IronBirds ‘first ever’ Maryland Sports Weekend at Leidos Field at Ripken Stadium, Cal Ripken, Jr., the 1983 Baltimore Orioles and the Baltimore Ravens will be honored and celebrated for great moments in Maryland sports, both past and future.

Aberdeen will host the Connecticut Tigers in three New York-Penn League games. Friday at 7:05 p.m.; Saturday at 6:05 p.m.; and Sunday at 4:05 p.m.

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The celebrations get started Friday as the IronBirds will celebrate team owner and baseball’s Iron Man, Cal Ripken, Jr., recognizing the 20th anniversary of the conclusion of his record 2,632 consecutive games played streak.

“Cal Ripken, Jr. means so much to the IronBirds and, more importantly, to his hometown of Aberdeen. We’re thrilled to recognize Cal this summer and celebrate the 20th anniversary of the conclusion of his consecutive games played streak,” IronBirds General Manager Mat Slatus said. “With Cal joining us at the ballpark on Friday night, our fans will have the opportunity to hear from him, first hand, thoughts and anecdotes about some of the more memorable moments of his career.”

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In addition to throwing out the game’s ceremonial first pitch and addressing fans from the field, Ripken will share anecdotes, memories and thoughts from his illustrious decades long Major League career throughout the evening. The evening will conclude with another premier fireworks show.

The IronBirds left 12 runners on base in their defeat against the Doubledays on July 15.

The fun continues on Saturday. The club will recognize and honor the iconic 1983 Orioles World Series championship team. Ripken will return to the stadium for the evening festivities, alongside 1983 teammates Al Bumbry, Bill Swaggerty and John Stefero.

Bumbry, Swaggerty and Stefero will be available to fans for autographs during the game. The IronBirds will play in authentic Baltimore Orioles uniforms and all fans will have the opportunity to pose for a photo with the 1983 World Series trophy. Throughout the evening, highlights and promotions from the 1983 season will be featured on the stadium’s HD video board. Prior to Saturday’s game, and all Saturday games during the 2018 season, fans may play catch on the stadium field from 4:45 to 5:05 p.m.

Rounding out the memorable weekend, the IronBirds and Baltimore Ravens are teaming together to host a pre-season NFL pep rally, kicking off what’s sure to be a fantastic summer for Baltimore’s hometown football team. Fans can meet Ravens cheerleaders and team mascot Poe and members of the Ravens marching band will perform prior to and during the game.

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Capping off the evening, one lucky fan will win a pair of Ravens 2018-2019 season tickets, provided by RAACE (Race Against Abuse of Children Everywhere). To enter to win the Ravens raffle tickets, fans should visit www.raaceraffle.org. Following Sunday’s game, and all Sunday games in 2018, kids can run the bases while seniors can stroll the bases.

Limited tickets are still available for the IronBirds’ first ever Maryland Sports Weekend. To purchase tickets to this historic weekend of IronBirds baseball and Maryland sports, fans should visit IronBirdsBaseball.com or call the IronBirds front office at 410-297-9292.

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