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1966 Sandy Koufax Game Worn Fielder's Glove.

The biggest advantage were hands that spun miracles out of horsehide. One night in a hotel bar in Milwaukee, umpires Doug Harvey and Jocko Conlan were having a drink when Koufax came in, sat down, and sent over a couple of beers. "I immediately ordered him a drink," Harvey said. "'Cause Jocko said, 'We don't take nothing from nobody.' In those days, that's the way the great umpires were. I said, 'Sandy, put your hand up here.' And I took the base of my hand and put it against the base of his left hand. And it just went up. His fingers must have extended beyond my hand by an inch and a half."

When Koufax put up his hand, he put down his World Series lighter with his name and the image of Dodger Stadium engraved on it. Later, when Harvey got up to leave, the barkeep said, "Here, this is yours." He was tempted to keep it. "I carried it around until the next time I saw him," Harvey said. "He gave me his glove as a way of saying thanks."

--excerpted from page 148 of Jane Leavy's biography Sandy Koufax, A Lefty's Legacy, copyright 2002.

Consigned directly by the son of umpire Doug Harvey, the presented Sandy Koufax fielder's glove ranks as one of the most important baseball artifacts ever to reach the Heritage Sports Collectibles auction block. The 1966 season during which the Rocky Colavito personal model Spalding 42-204 lefty glove saw action was not only Koufax' last, but also arguably his finest as well. Cy Young voting was unanimous, granting the superstar southpaw his third Award in a four-year span. His 1.72 ERA was a full half-run better than second place finisher Mike Cuellar, and his tally of twenty-seven victories was likewise tops in the National League. Without the services of Koufax, there is no question but that the 1966 National League pennant would have flown over some other ballpark besides Dodger Stadium.

The Cooperstown-quality glove matches all preferred attributes of a standard Koufax gamer, as noted by nationally recognized glove expert Joe Phillips, whose letter of authenticity accompanies the lot. Fine use is evident throughout, with the leather darkened in the pocket at the point of impact. A moderately age-faded number "32" appears at the thumb, with an even paler "Koo-Foo" markered at the pinky finger, Koufax' nickname around the Dodgers clubhouse. Retaining perfect 10/10 boldness is a handwritten inscription from the Hall of Fame legend in his 1960's style, "To Doug, Very Best Wishes, Sandy Koufax." Blue dymo tape, likewise dating from the period, spells "Sandy Koufax, L.A. Dodgers, 1966" over the "Spalding" patch at the wrist strap. This could easily be removed if desired, but we leave that decision to the winning bidder.

Not since December 2004, when the one he wore during his 1963 no-hitter realized $126,500 at auction, has the opportunity to own a genuine Koufax glove surfaced in the collecting hobby. Experienced collectors are well aware that fielding gloves remain the most elusive quarry in the game used discipline, far more scarce even than the coveted uniform, and represent the most personal of the tools of the baseball trade. The spectacular provenance, which includes signed letters from both Harvey's son and Doug Harvey himself attesting to the 1966 vintage, cements the piece as among the most important Koufax collectibles held in private hands. Heritage Auction Galleries is honored to present this historic piece to the collecting hobby for the first time. Letter of provenance from Doug Harvey. Letter of provenance from Todd C. Harvey. Letter of authenticity from Joe Phillips. Auction LOA from James Spence Authentication (autograph).

Service and Handling Description: Miscellaneous Collectibles, Small (view shipping information)

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Auction Dates
April, 2009
23rd-24th Thursday-Friday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 11
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 12,978

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Another major house refused the work stating it was too unique for the artist. Heritage saw that as an advantage!
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