Sunday, August 13, 2017

C.A.: 2017 Topps Gypsy Queen Sandy Koufax

(I went to an antique show today. It used to be a collectibles show with lots of baseball cards but has morphed into showcasing expensive jewelry and paintings. I did get to see a couple of $400 Play Ball cards though. No, I didn't buy them. Time for Cardboard Appreciation. This is the 260th in a series):

I've been having some problems with my left shoulder. It's just some muscle/alignment issue that will probably be alleviated by a trip to the chiropractor (mine does great things, don't get all weird on me). But it's particularly annoying because I am left-handed.

I identify myself by just a few things. They are not my job, any political affiliation or ideology, nor even where I live. But one of them is the fact that I am left-handed. I am a left-handed in a right-handed world.

(In fact, I have two strikes against me: I am also a night owl in a daylight world).

Today is National Left-Handers' Day, a day for myself and fellow lefties to beam with pride over which hand we use more often. We are part of a club that includes some of the greatest creators and thinkers -- and also some all-time baddies -- that the world has ever known. And we've apparently gotten to that point by coping with right-handed scissors and can openers.

Unlike most of the world, baseball favors left-handers, makes them a key part of the strategic aspect of the game (while also banning them from most positions in the infield).

And, if you are a left-handed pitcher, there is a good chance that you will last longer in the major leagues than a right-hander, as long as you still have your stuff.

Recently, I received from Cards On Cards a 2017 Gypsy Queen short-print of the greatest lefty pitcher ever known, Sandy Koufax.

Koufax is naturally a favorite of mine: mind-blowing talent, pitched for the Dodgers and is a lefty.

But he had a rather clunky nickname. "The Left Arm of God". That's kind of awkward. I suppose if you're the greatest of your kind, you deserve a regal nickname like that. "Lefty" may not cut it. (Although it was good enough for Carlton, Grove and Gomez).

There are two wishes I have for Koufax.

The first is that his career lasted at least five years longer than it did (when I feel particularly greedy, I wish it could've lasted 10 more years).

The second is that he had a friendlier nickname.

Here are a few other cards that arrived with the Koufax, some lefties, some not:

Please remember to hug your favorite lefty today.


  1. I always thought that was one of the best nicknames a ballplayer ever had.

  2. GQ Lefty K = great-looking cardboard! It's an odd realization I've just had but the only left-hander I know personally is a 9 year old. The folks I work with most closely are all righties. Lefties are definitely part of an elite group!

  3. One of my biggest baseball "what ifs" involves Sandy Koufax. That would be, what if the Dodgers talked 39 year old Sandy Koufax into coming out of retirement to pitch in the 1974 World Series? Would the outcome have been different?

  4. Night Owl - I'm a 52YO Dodger fan and I am a lefty too. (Also, I have been mesmerized by '75 minis since they were issued!)

  5. My favorite Lefty is the girl I had a major crush on in high school...don't think her husband would appreciate if I tracked them down to give her a hug.

  6. Damn. Yesterday was National Left-handers' Day? Super bummed that I missed that... since I too am a lefty. Anyways... getting back to baseball. I've been building a lefty collection for awhile now and the Dodgers might just have the greatest quintet of left-handed starting pitchers of all-time: Koufax, Kershaw, John, Reuss, and Valenzuela.

  7. I too am a lefty. I'm the youngest of 4 siblings and 2 of us (the even borns) are lefties. My mother was born lefty but at a very young age was converted because at the time some people still considered left-handedness a sign of the Devil and whatnot. Heck some people today still believe that.