After a 12-year career that began with the Brooklyn Dodgers and was cut short due to an elbow injury, Sandy Koufax was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame on Jan. 19, 1972 in what was his first time appearing on the ballot. At 36 years old, Koufax became the youngest player ever enshrined in Cooperstown, which still holds true.
Koufax signed with the Dodgers in 1954 to a contract that included a $14,000 signing bonus. The move turned out to be one of the best signings in Dodger history, as he became one of the most dominant pitchers the franchise has ever seen.
Koufax’s career accomplishments compare with any pitcher who has taken an MLB mound. He threw three no-hitters from 1962-64, then added to his legend by throwing a perfect game 1965 — which remains the only perfect game in Dodgers franchise history.
While the southpaw enjoyed varying levels of success throughout his career, the 1963 season was one of historic greatness for Koufax. Making 40 starts that year, he finished 25-5 with a 1.88 ERA and 306 strikeouts in 311 innings pitched and was rewarded with the Cy Young and NL MVP Awards.
The 1963 season propelled Koufax to three more years of dominance as he won a minimum of 19 games and finished with at least a .750 winning percentage through the 1966 season. During that span, Koufax added two more Cy Young Awards and twice (1965 and 1966) finished second in MVP voting.
Koufax won four World Series with the Dodgers and now serves as a Special Advisor to the Chairman.