Sandy Koufax defined and distinguished himself by what he did on the baseball field and what he refused to do. He challenged batters and stereotypes. On the evening of September 9,1965, he pitched a perfect game against the Chicago Cubs. Less than a month later, he achieved another kind of perfection by refusing to pitch the opening game of the World Series because it fell on the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. Until then, he was a ballplayer, perhaps the greatest lefthander of all time. Forever after, he would be a symbol, the one thing he never wanted to be. He was the consummate pitcher: elegant, dominant, unsurpassed.
He was also an original, perhaps the last athlete who refused to cash in on his fame. He remains unavailable, unassailable, unsullied. In over 400 interviews conducted with Koufax's friends, teammates, and opponents, Jane Leavy has created an unprecedented portrait of a man described by one former Dodger as the most misunderstood man in baseball.
About the Author: Jane Leavy is an award winning former sportswriter and feature writer for the Washington Post and author of the critically acclaimed comic novel Squeeze Play. She lives in Washington, D.C.