Monday, January 18, 2016

#343 Sandy Koufax

Sandy Koufax  Los Angeles Dodgers

Career: Notable Achievements (as listed on his BR Bullpen page):
  • 6-time NL All-Star (1961-1966)
  • NL MVP (1963)
  • 3-time ML Cy Young Award Winner (1963, 1965 & 1966)
  • 3-time NL Pitcher's Triple Crown (1963, 1965 & 1966)
  • 1963 World Series MVP
  • 1965 World Series MVP
  • 5-time NL ERA Leader (1962-1966)
  • 3-time NL Wins Leader (1963, 1965 & 1966)
  • 2-time NL Winning Percentage Leader (1964 & 1965)
  • 2-time NL Innings Pitched Leader (1965 & 1966)
  • 4-time NL Strikeouts Leader (1961, 1963, 1965 & 1966)
  • 2-time NL Complete Games Leader (1965 & 1966)
  • 3-time NL Shutouts Leader (1963, 1964 & 1966)
  • 15 Win Seasons: 5 (1961 & 1963-1966)
  • 20 Win Seasons: 3 (1963, 1965 & 1966)
  • 25 Win Seasons: 3 (1963, 1965 & 1966)
  • 200 Innings Pitched Seasons: 5 (1961 & 1963-1966)
  • 300 Innings Pitched Seasons: 3 (1963, 1965 & 1966)
  • 200 Strikeouts Seasons: 6 (1961-1966)
  • 300 Strikeouts Seasons: 3 (1963, 1965 & 1966)
  • Won four World Series with the Brooklyn Dodgers (1955; he did not play in the World Series) and the Los Angeles Dodgers (1959, 1963 & 1965)
  • Baseball Hall of Fame: Class of 1972

In 1960: This was Koufax' last season as a flamethrower whose record didn't reflect his ability. He was 8-13 with a 3.91 ERA and a 10.1 Ks per 9 innings average that led the league. Bigger things were coming....soon.

WikiFacts: Great quotes about Sandy Koufax, from his page on the Hall of Fame site and around the 'net:

"Either he throws the fastest ball I've ever seen, or I'm going blind,” said Hall of Famer Richie Ashburn.

“I can see how he won 25 games. What I don't understand is how he lost five,” said Hall of Famer Yogi Berra in 1963.

“He was the greatest pitcher of his time in baseball,” said [sportswriter] Jimmy Cannon.

“And that Koufax. You name a better left-hander in the history of baseball and I’ll eat my hat,” said Hall of Famer Harry Hooper.

"There are two times in my life the hair on my arms has stood up: The first time I saw the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and the first time I saw Sandy Koufax throw a fastball" - Al Campanis

"Trying to hit him was like trying to drink coffee with a fork." - Willie Stargell

"It's no disgrace to get beat by class." -Bob Hendley, the losing Chicago Cubs pitcher in Koufax's perfect game.

"It wasn't a matter that he could win ballgames, He could completely shut you down." -Joe Torre

The Card: As a Koufax collector this is not my favorite card. Actually the b/w 'action' shot is better than a lot of the others on 1960 Topps cards but I'd rather see Koufax with a cap on. Where and when the shot was taken is a mystery to me. The cap-less look might mean it was taken late in the Dodgers' days in Brooklyn and Topps was listening to the rumors of a move out west. But they probably took these kind of pics of almost everyone so it's more likely they chose it as what they thought was the best available.

The background looks like it might be the Memorial Coliseum or the apartments behind the Polo Grounds, or Wrigley Field, or someplace different entirely, I'm just not sure. And that bugs me.

As with other star (read: expensive) cards in this set I went with a F/G condition example. Putting together a vintage set in acceptable condition within a budget forces one to compromise.

1 comment:

  1. The B&W shot is the same as the one that's (in color) on his '61. And I agree with you it's a much better picture than what wound up on his 60 card. In fact, I love the '60 set but not this card. I think the '61 set is just okay, but I really like the Koufax card from that year.