“Pitcher Perfect” 1963-1966

Sandy Koufax on the cover of Life magazine – August 2, 1963 – “The Mostest Pitcher: Most Wins, Most Shutouts, Most Strike-outs.”

“There are only three people in all of baseball history who have done it: win three ‘triple crowns’ in pitching. Sandy Koufax, the guy shown at right, is one of them. He garnered this distinction during his magical years on the pitching mound with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1963, 1965 and 1966 — a memorable time for baseball. Those were the years when a number of great players roamed the fields of big league parks.  Mickey Mantle was still playing then, and there were a number of other “names,” some just getting started, others in their prime — Carl Yastrzemski, Harmon Killebrew, Hank Aaron, Willie McCovey, Whitey Ford, Juan Marichal, Orlando Cepeda and others.  On the Dodgers, along with Koufax, were other notables, not the least of whom was Don Drysdale, the other Dodger power pitcher from the mid-1960s. Koufax’s career spanned a period from 1955 to 1966 — from the end of the Brooklyn Dodgers era in New York, to their early years in Los Angeles. Famous Dodgers who played in that same era included Jackie Robinson, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, Pee Wee Reese, Jim Gilliam, Gil Hodges, Don Newcombe, Gino Cimoli, John Roseboro, among others. But for Sandy Koufax, the mid-1960s were the awesome years. And in the post-WWII period — the more modern era of baseball — Koufax would be the only guy to win three Triple Crowns for pitching (see Triple Crown sidebar below). Yet Koufax almost missed these magical years. For there was a time in his career, at one season’s end in 1960, when he threw his glove and spikes into the trash can, believing he was through with baseball. But to his and baseball’s good fortune, he did not quit, but rather persevered, to become one of baseball’s all-time greats. Here’s a little bit of his story and his contributions to the baseball record books. …”
The Pop History Dig

Left-hander pitcher Sandy Koufax of the Los Angeles Dodgers fires his fast ball, with one leg out front in his long stride, at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, Ca., on Oct. 11, 1965. The Los Angeles Dodgers of the National League face the the Minnesota Twins, the American League champions, in the fifth game of the World Series. The Dodgers went on to win the World Series.

About 1960s: Days of Rage

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