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The Cardinals honored Mad Men's Jon Hamm with his very own bobblehead night

Bobblehead photo: Larry State / Real-Time Correspondent

ST. LOUIS -- Thrilled to have an excuse to spend a night at Busch Stadium, Jon Hamm - actor, St. Louis native and unabashed Cardinals fan - was the organization's guest of honor at Monday's series opener against the Reds.

The Cardinals immortalized the 43-year-old Mad Men star in the form of a bobblehead, prompting Hamm to quip that "they probably just repurposed a Matt Carpenter bobblehead for my thing." Their likeness is lacking a bit these days, though, as Carpenter has recently embraced the clean-shaven look.

Hamm intends to leave the ballpark with a case of bobbleheads, noting that the requests have been unrelenting from family and friends. He's also stowing one away for actor Paul Rudd, a longtime friend and Royals fan.

"Maybe I'll get one and write something terrible on the bottom of it," Hamm noted.

Hamm is shameless in his support of the Cardinals, often wearing his Cardinals hat for interviews and regularly escaping Hollywood to see the club play in person. He attended his first World Series game in 1982 at the age of 11, was at Shea Stadium when Adam Wainwright froze Carlos Beltran with his curve and narrated the official World Series DVD of the Cardinals' 2011 Championship. His affinity for the sport also made his role in the 2014 film Million Dollar Arm a perfect fit.

Hamm's playing career peaked and ended at John Burroughs School in Ladue, Mo., where he was teammates with John Simmons, son of former Cardinals catcher Ted Simmons. Ted Simmons gave Hamm his first catcher's mitt, which Hamm believes was bagged up and donated once he went away to college.

His playing career did not extend beyond high school.

"I had no illusions about how not professionally acute I was at baseball," Hamm said. "Fortunately, I was able to find another career."

The Cardinals showed off Hollywood's biggest Cardinals fan by driving him around the warning track during a pregame ceremony. Hamm then threw out a ceremonial first pitch to Hall of Fame shortstop Ozzie Smith.

"It's such a great organization," Hamm said. "It's been a part of my life since… I can't remember a time that it hasn't. It's amazing to be back here."

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB.