A rare Sandy Koufax jersey hits a home run at auction

A piece of history from one of the greatest Jewish sports legends of all time could be yours for just $200,000.

By GABE FRIEDMAN/JTA
June 11, 2017 08:06
1 minute read.
Sandy Koufax

Sandy Koufax. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

 
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If you want to buy this Sandy Koufax jersey, you might need the salary of a major league baseball player.

Lelands.com is auctioning a Sandy Koufax rookie jersey from 1955. As of Sunday morning, the current bid is close to $200,000, but the auction site estimates that it could sell for as much as $500,000. The auction, which started last month, ends June 30.

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According to the site, the jersey is in great condition, its only noticeable blemishes a few moth holes on the back of the collar and under the Koufax name, which is stitched on the bottom right corner of the jersey’s front. A Dodgers minor league player acquired it directly from Koufax in 1957.

Though he was only 19 in 1955, Koufax helped lead the Brooklyn Dodgers to their first-ever World Series, with a 2-2 record with a very respectable 3.02 earned run average. From there, of course, the Jewish southpaw would go on to become one of the best pitchers of all time, but memorabilia from an athlete’s rookie (or first full) season is always worth more than from later years.

The Lelands auction also includes a baseball that may have been used in a 1963 World Series game in which Koufax beat the New York Yankees and recorded 15 strikeouts. Koufax pitched that gem in the series’ first game, but Lelands can only confirm that the ball is from one of the first two games in the series.

Lelands also recently auctioned off an extremely rare baseball signed by Jewish player Moe Berg for $35,000. Berg, who played for five teams between 1923 and 1939, was a catcher who later became a spy for the CIA (then the Office of Strategic Services). He spoke seven languages and was once called the “strangest man ever to play baseball.”

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