Sandy Koufax: A Lefty's Legacy

( 47 )

Overview

No immortal in the history of baseball retired so young, so well, or so completely as Sandy Koufax. After compiling a remarkable record from 1962 to 1966 that saw him lead the National League in ERA all five years, win three Cy Young awards, and pitch four no-hitters including a perfect game, Koufax essentially disappeared. Save for his induction into the Hall of Fame and occasional appearances at the Dodgers training camp, Koufax has remained unavailable, unassailable, and unsullied, in the process becoming much...

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Overview

No immortal in the history of baseball retired so young, so well, or so completely as Sandy Koufax. After compiling a remarkable record from 1962 to 1966 that saw him lead the National League in ERA all five years, win three Cy Young awards, and pitch four no-hitters including a perfect game, Koufax essentially disappeared. Save for his induction into the Hall of Fame and occasional appearances at the Dodgers training camp, Koufax has remained unavailable, unassailable, and unsullied, in the process becoming much more than just the best pitcher of his generation. He is the Jewish boy from Brooklyn, who refused to pitch the opening game of the 1965 World Series on Yom Kippur, defining himself as a man who placed faith over fame. This act made him the standard to which Jewish parents still hold their children. Except for his autobiography (published in 1966), Koufax has resolutely avoided talking about himself. But through sheer doggedness that even Koufax came to marvel at, Jane Leavy was able to gain his trust to the point where they talked regularly over the three years Leavy reported her book. With Koufax's blessing, Leavy interviewed nearly every one of his former teammates, opponents, and friends, and emerged with a portrait of the artist that is as thorough and stylish as was his command on the pitching mound.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
How good was legendary L.A. Dodger lefty Sandy Koufax? He pitched a perfect game against the Cubs in September 1965. How principled was he? A month after that perfect game, he refused to pitch in the opening game of the World Series, because the game fell on the same day as a major Jewish holiday. That gutsy decision earned him the respect and admiration of many and made him an even bigger symbol than his pitching had. Jane Leavy brings us the man behind the legend in this look at the great Koufax.
New York Daily News
“A baseball classic; the first in-depth reporting on the life and career of the Dodger icon…a must read.”
Sports Illustrated
“An exhaustively researched study that paints an intriguing portrait of the famously reclusive Dodger pitcher.”
Sports Illustrated
“An exhaustively researched study that paints an intriguing portrait of the famously reclusive Dodger pitcher.”
New York Daily News
“A baseball classic; the first in-depth reporting on the life and career of the Dodger icon…a must read.”
Publishers Weekly
Sportswriter Leavy describes her book as not so much a biography of a ballplayer as a social history of baseball, with the former star pitcher's career as the barometer of change. While both a preface and an introduction spin Leavy's storytelling wheels, a compelling, literary social history does indeed get rolling. Koufax refused to participate in the project, so Leavy has spoken to hundreds of people with something to share on the former Brooklyn/L.A. Dodger Hank Aaron, Joe Torre, childhood friend and Mets co-owner Fred Wilpon and even the old Dodgers equipment manager among them and their testimonies make for a rich baseball pastiche and an engaging look at the game's more innocent period. Koufax capped off his first year by watching the 1955 World Series against the hated Yankees from the bench, and following the Dodgers' historic victory headed from Yankee Stadium to class at Columbia University, where he studied architecture (in case the baseball thing didn't work out). Even when Leavy's historical anecdotes are quaint, they prove timely: she details Koufax holding out for a better contract with fellow star pitcher Don Drysdale in '66, paving the way for free agency. While Leavy's interest in Koufax's Jewish heritage at times seems to border on the obsessive, she delivers an honest and exquisitely detailed examination of a complex man, one whose skills were such that slugger Willie Stargell once likened hitting against Koufax to "trying to drink coffee with a fork." Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
VOYA
Sandy Koufax is the antithesis of most former superstar athletes. He does not feel the need to self-promote. He does not have to feed a starved ego by putting his name in the paper every few months. He never has and never will. He is just a great person, who is considered one of baseball's greatest pitchers of the last half-century. Born in Brooklyn, New York, in December 1935, Koufax was more interested in basketball and the New York Knicks during his years at Lafayette High School than in the Brooklyn Dodgers. Following his freshman year at the University of Cincinnati, he was asked to try out for the Dodgers. After signing with them, he went to spring training in 1955. The first half of his career was frustrating for Koufax, as the Dodgers did not recognize his worth. The next six years, however, are considered by many to be the best ever by a Major Leaguer. The hard-throwing lefty retired after the 1966 season with an arthritic elbow and has never looked back. Leavy does not just tell the story of a great baseball player but also discloses the life of a great man. Writing about Koufax is difficult. He rarely does interviews and likes to keep his name out of the limelight, not because he values his private life beyond all else, but because he simply cannot see what all the fuss is about. The author's extensive research and interviews with Koufax's friends and former ballplayers are extraordinary. This biography is a highly recommended purchase for public and school libraries. Index. Photos. Appendix. VOYA Codes: 5Q 4P S A/YA (Hard to imagine it being any better written; Broad general YA appeal; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12; Adult and Young Adult). 2002, HarperCollins, 282p,
— Bradley Honigford
Library Journal
Leavy has framed the baseball life of Hall of Fame pitcher Koufax in the context of his perfect game pitching performance of September 9, 1965, one of the record four no-hit games he pitched in his career. The collaboration of the author with former U.S. poet laureate Robert Pinsky in reading the story works very well indeed; it helps tremendously that they are both baseball and Koufax fans. Saying that Koufax's career "began a decade too early" to take advantage of modern sports medicine, camcorders, and motion science hardly prepares the listener to imagine the pain in which Koufax pitched his final years as a Dodger. The remedies to the pain-caustic applications of red-hot pepper paste, drugs, and endless cortisone shots-hint at the determination and inner strength required to be the best left-handed pitcher ever. Comments from contemporaries in baseball as well as from others Koufax touched and continues to touch today make this audio absolutely inspiring. It will be most appreciated by baseball fans; very highly recommended for all sports and biography collections.-Cliff Glaviano, Bowling Green State Univ. Libs., OH Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Taut biography of the Dodger great's playing years: baseball savvy and as far from tall-tale-telling as former Washington Post sportswriter Leavy (Squeeze Play, not reviewed) can get. Koufax lent himself only incidentally to this work-to verify stories and allow the author access to his friends and family-but Leavy has produced what appears to be a very convincing portrait. She concentrates on the player's six last, mind-blowing years, when his fastball and curve ruled. His plays on the mound are adeptly recorded-including, as interspersed chapters, his perfect game, told with consummate skill and containing the only hint of hyperbole here: "the ball headed toward home like an eighteen wheeler appearing down the highway out of a mirage." But it's a sense of Koufax's character that Leavy most wishes to convey. Never one for promiscuous self-promotion, Koufax has been shoehorned into the recluse category; because he is reserved and Jewish, he was typecast as "moody, aloof, curt, intellectual, different." Yes, he wouldn't pitch the opening game of the World Series because it fell on Yom Kippur, an act with profound cultural impact, and yes, he liked to read, a positive egghead by sporting standards, though he also says: "I may have read Huxley once in my life, but if I did, frankly, I don't remember." His 1963 self-profile is true to form: "a normal twenty-seven-year-old bachelor who happens to be of the Jewish faith. . . . I like to read a book and listen to music and I'd like to meet the girl I'd want to marry." But Leavy reveals also a man of dignity, honesty, and courtesy, not to mention his having that shaman's touch with a baseball. He is, simply, a standard: "In virtually every waythat matters, ethically and economically, medically and journalistically, he offers a way to measure where we've been, what we've come to, what we've lost." Well-conceived and sharply drawn, a thinking fan's biography.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061779008
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 3/16/2010
  • Series: P.S. Series
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 196,139
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Jane Leavy is an award-winning former sportswriter and feature writer for the Washington Post. She is the author of Sandy Koufax and the comic novel Squeeze Play, called “the best novel ever written about baseball” by Entertainment Weekly. She lives in Washington, D.C.

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

Warming Up

Three decades after he threw his last pitch, Sandy Koufax was back in uniform at Dodgertown, a rare occurrence given his belief that baseball uniforms do not flatter those of a certain age. This is where he made his debut in the spring of 1955 and Vero Beach is where he has chosen to make his after-baseball home -- an odd choice for a man said not to like the game and the attention it brings him. Mornings when he's in town, he works out in the training room. The clubhouse guys gave him a key. He brings the bagels.

On this particular day in February 1997, he was at Dodgertown for a seminar on sports medicine. He had been recruited by Frank Jobe, the Dodgers' team physician, to teach an audience of biomechanical experts how to throw a ball. He couldn't very well say no: he was on Jobe's operating table at the time. He had torn his rotator cuff falling down the stairs. The Boys of Summers Past are not immune to senior moments.

Thinking of Koufax as clumsy is as disconcerting as the sight of the familiar "32" confined to this minimalist stage: sitting behind a buntingdraped table in a multipurpose room at what is now known as the Conference Center at Dodgertown. He looked thinner than in memory, thirty pounds less than his playing weight, the legacy of an afterlife as a marathoner. The old baggy uniforms always made him look less imposing than he was. His hair was thinner too, but silver, not gray. He had the appearance of a man aging as well as one possibly can, somehow managing to look graceful in uniform while perched beside a droopy fern.

In 1955, Dodgertown was a baseball plantation with diamondsthat disappeared into the orange groves on the horizon. No one could have envisioned then the industry that baseball would become; the science that throwing would become; or the pitcher Koufax would become. A pitcher so sublime, people remember always the first time they saw him -- among them fellow lecturers Duke Snider and Dave Wallace. What Wallace, a baseball man, recalls most is leaving the stadium convinced: "The ball comes out of his hand different from anybody else's."

His virtuosity was a synthesis of physiognomy and physical imagination. He didn't just dominate hitters or games. He dominated the ball. He could make it do things: rise, break, sing. Gene Mauch, the old Phillies skipper, was once asked if Koufax was the best lefty he ever saw. Mauch replied: "The best righty, too." As Billy Williams, the Hall of Famer, put it: "There was a different tone when people talked about Sandy Koufax."

Hank Aaron was his toughest out: "You talk about the Gibsons and the Drysdales and the Spahns. And as good as those guys were, Koufax was a step ahead of them. No matter who he pitched against, he could always be a little bit better. If somebody pitched a one-hitter, he could pitch a no-hitter."

John Roseboro was his favorite receiver: "I think God came down and tapped him on the shoulder and said, 'Boy, I'm gonna make you a pitcher.' God only made one of him."

He was an artist who inspired ballplayers to reach beyond their usual idiom for metaphor and simile. They called him the game's Cary Grant and Fred Astaire and compared him to the Mona Lisa and the David. "He looked like Michelangelo," Ernie Banks said. "Pitching, walking, what ever he did was kind of in rhythm with life, stylish." Sometimes one analogy did not suffice. As Koufax's teammate, the noted art historian Lou Johnson, said, "He was Michelangelo and Picasso rolled into one."

Absent the radar guns and computer-generated technology of the late twentieth century, which turned acts of grace into biomechanical models, he was admired rather than analyzed. His fastball remains elegantly understated, unmeasurable, unknowable. His curveball lives on in grainy television footage and in the memory of the unfortunates who tried to hit it. There are those, romantics and catchers, content to leave it at that -- Roseboro among them: "That SOB was unusual. There's never been another like him and I don't think there ever will be. Trying to explain how he throws, how he got his control, how he thinks -- he was just un-fucking-usual. Who gives a shit how he threw it?"

Koufax cared. Long after he retired, he became a roving pitching coach in the Dodgers' minor league system and a stealth advisor to an ardent cadre of pitchers, coaches, and managers who quote him like a shaman -- Sandy says! -- and then get in line for his autograph just like everyone else. He didn't want them to do what he said because Sandy Koufax said, "Do it." He wanted them to understand why it worked.

He had come to see his body as a system for the delivery of stored energy, intuiting the principles of physics inherent in the pitching motion. This realization not only put him ahead of batters, it put him ahead of science. It would take decades for the gurus of biotech medicine to catch up. Later, when he had the time, he visited their labs and delved into their textbooks seeking proofs for what he knew empirically to be true. He learned to break down the pitching motion into its component parts and to put the science of motion into accessible language. He improvised drills using a bag of balls and a chain-link fence, giving impromptu clinics in the parking lot of Bobby's Restaurant in Vero Beach. He held whole pitching staffs in thrall with his knowledge -- sitting, as John Franco of the Mets put it, "bright-eyed at his feet in the middle of the locker room like little boy scouts."

His face changes when he talks about pitching. His eyes light up, his grammar comes alive ...

Sandy Koufax. Copyright © by Jane Leavy. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Read More Show Less

First Chapter

Chapter One

Warming Up

Three decades after he threw his last pitch, Sandy Koufax was back in uniform at Dodgertown, a rare occurrence given his belief that baseball uniforms do not flatter those of a certain age. This is where he made his debut in the spring of 1955 and Vero Beach is where he has chosen to make his after-baseball home -- an odd choice for a man said not to like the game and the attention it brings him. Mornings when he's in town, he works out in the training room. The clubhouse guys gave him a key. He brings the bagels.

On this particular day in February 1997, he was at Dodgertown for a seminar on sports medicine. He had been recruited by Frank Jobe, the Dodgers' team physician, to teach an audience of biomechanical experts how to throw a ball. He couldn't very well say no: he was on Jobe's operating table at the time. He had torn his rotator cuff falling down the stairs. The Boys of Summers Past are not immune to senior moments.

Thinking of Koufax as clumsy is as disconcerting as the sight of the familiar "32" confined to this minimalist stage: sitting behind a buntingdraped table in a multipurpose room at what is now known as the Conference Center at Dodgertown. He looked thinner than in memory, thirty pounds less than his playing weight, the legacy of an afterlife as a marathoner. The old baggy uniforms always made him look less imposing than he was. His hair was thinner too, but silver, not gray. He had the appearance of a man aging as well as one possibly can, somehow managing to look graceful in uniform while perched beside a droopy fern.

In 1955, Dodgertown was a baseball plantation with diamonds that disappeared into the orange groves on the horizon. No one could have envisioned then the industry that baseball would become; the science that throwing would become; or the pitcher Koufax would become. A pitcher so sublime, people remember always the first time they saw him -- among them fellow lecturers Duke Snider and Dave Wallace. What Wallace, a baseball man, recalls most is leaving the stadium convinced: "The ball comes out of his hand different from anybody else's."

His virtuosity was a synthesis of physiognomy and physical imagination. He didn't just dominate hitters or games. He dominated the ball. He could make it do things: rise, break, sing. Gene Mauch, the old Phillies skipper, was once asked if Koufax was the best lefty he ever saw. Mauch replied: "The best righty, too." As Billy Williams, the Hall of Famer, put it: "There was a different tone when people talked about Sandy Koufax."

Hank Aaron was his toughest out: "You talk about the Gibsons and the Drysdales and the Spahns. And as good as those guys were, Koufax was a step ahead of them. No matter who he pitched against, he could always be a little bit better. If somebody pitched a one-hitter, he could pitch a no-hitter."

John Roseboro was his favorite receiver: "I think God came down and tapped him on the shoulder and said, 'Boy, I'm gonna make you a pitcher.' God only made one of him."

He was an artist who inspired ballplayers to reach beyond their usual idiom for metaphor and simile. They called him the game's Cary Grant and Fred Astaire and compared him to the Mona Lisa and the David. "He looked like Michelangelo," Ernie Banks said. "Pitching, walking, what ever he did was kind of in rhythm with life, stylish." Sometimes one analogy did not suffice. As Koufax's teammate, the noted art historian Lou Johnson, said, "He was Michelangelo and Picasso rolled into one."

Absent the radar guns and computer-generated technology of the late twentieth century, which turned acts of grace into biomechanical models, he was admired rather than analyzed. His fastball remains elegantly understated, unmeasurable, unknowable. His curveball lives on in grainy television footage and in the memory of the unfortunates who tried to hit it. There are those, romantics and catchers, content to leave it at that -- Roseboro among them: "That SOB was unusual. There's never been another like him and I don't think there ever will be. Trying to explain how he throws, how he got his control, how he thinks -- he was just un-fucking-usual. Who gives a shit how he threw it?"

Koufax cared. Long after he retired, he became a roving pitching coach in the Dodgers' minor league system and a stealth advisor to an ardent cadre of pitchers, coaches, and managers who quote him like a shaman -- Sandy says! -- and then get in line for his autograph just like everyone else. He didn't want them to do what he said because Sandy Koufax said, "Do it." He wanted them to understand why it worked.

He had come to see his body as a system for the delivery of stored energy, intuiting the principles of physics inherent in the pitching motion. This realization not only put him ahead of batters, it put him ahead of science. It would take decades for the gurus of biotech medicine to catch up. Later, when he had the time, he visited their labs and delved into their textbooks seeking proofs for what he knew empirically to be true. He learned to break down the pitching motion into its component parts and to put the science of motion into accessible language. He improvised drills using a bag of balls and a chain-link fence, giving impromptu clinics in the parking lot of Bobby's Restaurant in Vero Beach. He held whole pitching staffs in thrall with his knowledge -- sitting, as John Franco of the Mets put it, "bright-eyed at his feet in the middle of the locker room like little boy scouts."

His face changes when he talks about pitching. His eyes light up, his grammar comes alive ...

Sandy Koufax. Copyright © by Jane Leavy. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
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Interviews & Essays

An Interview with Jane Leavy

Barnes & Noble.com: What made you want to write this book? Given Koufax's reputation as being reluctant to talk to the press, how did you get him to cooperate with you?

Jane Leavy: What I wanted to do, and this is what I told Sandy when I first begged his indulgence and tried to acquire his cooperation, was that I was going to write a book that was not just biographical but was also a social history using his career to show how much had changed in baseball and sports and to a certain degree, in America. Koufax made it clear from the get-go that he preferred nothing be written at all -- he is not a man who wants to live in the past tense. But, he said, if it is going to be written, he preferred it be done right. To that end, he agreed to give me access to his friends -- telling them it was okay to talk to me -- and to verify biographical facts. So I describe his cooperation as circumscribed but invaluable. When Sandy Koufax didn't pitch on Yom Kippur, he had lodged himself in my soul. He was impressive by refusing to pitch in the World Series on Yom Kippur, and by refusing to play as long as others do -- and going out on top -- he was unlike a lot of other athletes. Sandy knew when to quit.

B&N.com: He faced a certain amount of anti-Semitism from other players and other baseball people. Please tell us about that.

JL: When Sandy came up in '55 -- and here is this nice Jewish man from Brooklyn with this big contract which was more than many made -- not everybody was entirely for him being on the roster. A few Dodgers, marginal players as well as stars, actually went to the black players on the team and said, "What is that kike, Jew son of a bitch doing taking our job?" And, as Don Newcombe said to me, the black players were astonished, not just at the anti-Semitism -- that they expected, because the black players more than anyone else knew baseball was not a bastion of liberality -- but they couldn't believe the white guys could be dumb enough to be complaining to them. Of course, in 1955, ten years after the liberation of the concentration camps, blacks and Jews still identified with each other as minorities. So the response of the black guys on the Dodgers -- Newcombe, Joe Black, and Jackie Robinson -- was to embrace and take under their wing this nice Jewish boy. It was a world still rife with stereotypes.

B&N.com: In the days when Florida, where the Dodgers had spring training, was still segregated, Koufax made friends with many black players before that was common. What was it about Koufax that brought this about?

JL: That was partly due to his growing up in Brooklyn and being a basketball player who went out and competed at all the best courts, and the people who were the best were black guys. I think he was a man who was very comfortable in his own skin and everybody else's. After practice, the black players would go back to the black hotel, and Sandy would go back to the white hotel. But Koufax used to like to come over to the black hotel. He fit right in.

B&N.com: You use Koufax's perfect game against the Cubs in 1965 as an anchor, so to speak, for your biography. Why is that?

JL: I picked the perfect game for two reasons. One was that morning in New York, the guys who run baseball announced that the first game of the World Series would be played on Yom Kippur. So when Sandy went to the mound that night, September 9, 1965, he knew that if the Dodgers were lucky enough to win the pennant, and that was no assured thing, that he wouldn't be opening the World Series.

The second reason I picked it was because he had been struggling, his arm was already suffering the ravages of degenerative arthritis. He had already told one of the beat reporters whom he was very close to, a guy named Phil Collier, that the next year would surely be his last.

The other reason is because the game in many ways mirrors the arc of his career. It started out as a no-big-deal game that night. It went from nothing special to never better, much the way Sandy's career did. Those last two innings where he struck out the last six batters he faced, threw so hard that his hat fell off his head with more than one vehement delivery. No one had ever seen Koufax throw that hard, and rarely, if ever, has anyone thrown harder than that. He was never better than that.

B&N.com: Koufax became a hero to Jews when he refused to pitch in a World Series game because it was Yom Kippur. He gained the respect of Gentiles as well. Was Koufax a particularly religious man, and was this a difficult decision for him to make?

JL: He had never pitched on any of the High Holidays. It is just that none of them had ever coincided with the opening game of the World Series before. Well, he declined it because he was a Jew and Jews don't work on Yom Kippur. To him, it was no big deal. He was thinking, [Don] Drysdale will start the first game, and I'll start the second game. We'll win both of them and go back to Los Angeles two games up on the Minnesota Twins. Whoever would have thought both of those guys would lose? When Drysdale got hammered in the first game and Alston came out to get the ball, Drysdale said, "Well, Skip, I bet you wish I was Jewish today, too, huh?"

B&N.com: Koufax and Don Drysdale were considered rebels when they held out for higher salaries for the 1966 season in an age before free agency. What made them do this? What was the historical importance?

JL: It was Ginger Drysdale's [Don's wife] idea. They were certainly tired of [Dodger general manager] Buzzie Bavasi's act of playing them against each other and saying, "How can you ask for so much money when Don has only asked for this?" And so Ginger said, "Why don't you not sign unless both of you are happy." Sandy liked to challenge authority, and he already knew that next season was going to be his last. What they asked for in dollars, which Drysdale said was like asking for the moon at that time, was not nearly as significant in my estimation as the demand to be reckoned with. To say we don't want to be dictated to, we want to be negotiated with. And to demand the right to have representation, which in fact they did have. So, it was really an understated and very historical event in the evolution of labor wars in baseball.

B&N.com: You've subtitled the book "A Lefty's Legacy." What is Koufax's legacy?

JL: I think it is a legacy of uncommon decency and uncommon grace, both of a physical and nonphysical kind. I think that he is somebody whose way of being simply elevated him above sport, and I think people continue to revere him. And I have been astonished by it -- why 37 years after the man has pitched people still care. I think intuitively people sensed about this guy that he was better, not just in the way he threw a ball but in the way he behaved in public and the way he comported himself. He defined himself by what he did but also by what he refused to do. Not just for his decision not to pitch on Yom Kippur but also his refusal of continuing just for a buck, his refusal to endorse roach spray, and his refusal to get himself indicted for autograph merchandise fraud. He really is unsullied.

B&N.com: What will your next book be?

JL: The book I would like to write next is a novel about Babe Ruth. I have been working on it for a long time already, but whether I continue to do that or go back and write another nonfiction book, I'm not clear. I may do both at once. You never know.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 47 )
Rating Distribution

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(34)

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(6)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 47 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2012

    Behind the legend

    Leavy gives a great look at Koufax behind the legend. Excellent portrait of the greatest lefty ever. Excellent read. Grear baseball book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2014

    Sandy

    I sit on your face rubbing my puzzy against your lips as i roll my hips

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2014

    Ff

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 6, 2014

    Rushstorm

    Oh, it's simple. I just stabbed all 22 thorns in my arm and waited two weeks until the infernal pain subsided, he laughs. But... thorn weilding is a delicate, powerful, and time-consuming skill. It took me a lifetime to master it--one training session will teach you how to hold it, make a Leafguard for it, and which end of the whip is yours. He fashions her a Leafguard and scratches a scraggly "Rs" on it. Here. Put this on your left or right foreleg. Then find yourself a tendril of thorn, about a foxelnght long.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2014

    Lionflame

    (Fine. I will. And i'll lnow how to use it ok.) Pads outt

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2014

    A dark shadow

    Hmmm... fineee. Ittt goseee outtt

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2014

    Sandyfire

    ... ok... *does that*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 16, 2013

    Sandy is awsomely dandy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 9, 2012

    Waterlily

    Anyone on?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2012

    A person

    A girl with fiery red hair and crystal blue eyes dashes in. She wears a green tunic, leggings and a green cap tht runs down her back. She has a sword in hand and a battered wooden shield in the other. On her long pointed ears are two iorn earrings"

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2012

    Andromeda

    "No harsh feelings" she rumbled, reprating the cats words

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2012

    Best written baseball book ever!

    This book is awesome. It not only paints the history of baseballs greatest pitcher ever, it also paints the game as it was. Before sports agents screwed it up.
    Leavy is a brilliant writer. Period. The book will make you laugh ou loud, it will make you remember what a great game baseball used to be. And, if you are one of those fortunate fans like me, who got to see Koufax pitch, it will rekindle the memories of what an amazing pitcher he was and how astounded you were when you saw him. If you are not old enough to have seen him, be prepared to be amazed at the greatest pitching talent you never got to see.
    Willie Stargell summed him up perfectly, trying to hit off Koufax, was like trying to eat soup with a fork. Reading about Koufax is much, much easier....Leavy serves him up brilliantly! Great read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2012

    Enjoyable read

    Very enjoyable book. Although I wasn't born until 1969, I've become a very big fan of 60s era baseball. Leavy brings the games and players to life and gives us great insights into Sandy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2012

    Mudkit

    Mommy whos my daddy??

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2012

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2011

    Great Book!

    I really enjoyed this book. His story is incredible and it was very well writen. The authors way of writing made me almost unable to put it down because of the mystery. Very well writen. Highly recomend for any baseball lover like myself.

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  • Posted September 9, 2011

    Great read

    Great insight into a fantastic but private athlete. Jane Leavy is an outstanding author--I enjoy her books.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 18, 2011

    Great book!

    A very easy and enjoyable read where you find yourself feeling like you are at Dodger stadium in the 60's watching Sandy pitch like no other has pitched since. Highly recommend this book as well as Leavy's recent book about Mickey Mantle.

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  • Posted February 9, 2011

    Great Story of a Great pitcher and class person

    Well written and researched book. The delivery of the story against the backdrop of social and political atomsphere of the country not only brought back memories but would be invformstive for the casual reader. The content not only serves to confirm his greatness but also give insights to his high character. Great read for even the non baseball fan.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 20, 2010

    Koufax - an unbelievable career for a great man...

    Sandy Koufax has been my favorite baseball player since I was in grade school during the early 1960's. I've read everything I could find about the man. Jane Leavy's story is the best! Even though I lived through it (mostly listening to Vin Scully on my transistor radio), I still learned new things about his career.

    Probably the greatest lefty in history, this is a must read for any Dodger fan. For you youngsters who love baseball, read about what the big leagues were like back then when pitchers were expected to pitch nine innings.

    I promise you will find Koufax's story a fascinating one!

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