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Sandy Koufax

American left-handed former pitcher in Major League Baseball

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The very definition of overpowering power pitcher

  • Nov 17, 2010
  • by
Rating:
+5
Koufax was so good that even though his arm was deteriorating, he could still completely overpower hitters. Two of the most fitting attributes came from other people in baseball. After pitcher Tommy John underwent surgery on his pitching arm he said, "I told them to put in Koufax's fastball and they did, but it was Mrs. Koufax." The plate umpire of the seventh game of the 1965 World Series where Koufax pitched a shutout against the offense-laden Twins lineup despite intense pain and using only fastballs called it the greatest pitching performance he had ever seen. In the modern world where 200 innings a season is considered a heavy load for a pitcher, Koufax three 335 innings in 1965 and 323 in 1966. This was with an arm that was becoming so arthritic he was relying on painkillers to be able to pitch. Despite his short career, his career stats still rank him very high. Without question he was the greatest pitcher of the 1960's.

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Charles Ashbacher ()
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Charlie Ashbacher is a compulsive reader and writer about many subjects. His prime areas of expertise are in mathematics and computers where he has taught every course in the mathematics and computer … more
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Wiki


Sanford "Sandy" Koufax (pronounced /ˈkoʊfæks/) (born Sanford Braun, on December 30, 1935) is an American left-handed former pitcher in Major League Baseball who played his entire career for the Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers, from 1955 to 1966. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972, the youngest former player to receive that honor.

Koufax's career peaked with a run of six outstanding seasons from 1961 to 1966, before arthritis ended his career at age 30. He was named the National League's Most Valuable Player in 1963. He also won the 1963, 1965, and 1966 Cy Young Awards by unanimous votes, all during the period when only one pitcher was chosen per season, making him the first 3-time Cy Young winner in baseball history. In each of his Cy Young seasons, Koufax won the pitcher's triple crown by leading the NL in wins, strikeouts, and earned run average. Koufax's totals would also have led the American League in those seasons.

Koufax was the first major leaguer to pitch four no-hitters (including a perfect game). Despite his comparatively short career, Koufax's 2,396 career strikeouts ranked 7th in history as of his retirement, trailing only Warren Spahn (2,583) among left-handers. Retiring at the peak of his career, he became, at age 36 and 20 days, the youngest player ever elected to the Hall of Fame.

Koufax is also remembered as one of the outstanding Jewish athletes in American sports. His decision not to pitch Game 1 of...

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