Koufax gets a statue of Dodger Stadium next to Jackie Robinson | WGN Radio 720

Los Angeles (AP) — When Sandy Koufax joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1955, he was in awe of being on the same team as Jackie Robinson.

67 years later, the two are now bronze immortalized at the entrance to Dodger Stadium.

The Koufax statue was unveiled at Centerfield Plaza on Saturday, before the Los Angeles Dodgers confronted the Cleveland Guardians. This is the second sculpture that the Dodgers commissioned in 2017, following Robinson.

“It was completely unimaginable to share this space with him at the time, and even today it is one of the greatest honors of my life,” said 86-year-old Koufax.

The Koufax statue was unveiled in 2019 and was initially scheduled to be unveiled the following year until the coronavirus pandemic put those plans on hold. The Dodgers have been waiting until this year, which may be more appropriate.

It was 50 years ago that Koufax was one of the first Dodgers to have his permanent retirement alongside Robinson and Roy Campanella. It is also the golden anniversary of Koufax being the youngest player to be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Koufax was two World Series MVPs with the Dodgers. His left-handed player won three Cy Young Awards, threw four no-hitters, and was 165-187 in his 12-year career in Brooklyn and Los Angeles.

The 19.5 tonnes statue was carved by Branley Cadet, who also worked on the Robinson statue. This sculpture captures Koufax’s signature leg kick as he prepares to throw. It also shows a calm photo of Koufax’s decision and when he was in the windup.

Koufax chose the image of the inspiration for the statue. He also grabbed baseball and they took a picture of his left hand, which also captured perfectly.

“For me, I wanted to capture his strength, concentration and honesty above all else,” Cadet said. “He’s a very quiet and absolute gentleman, but some of him is just a fierce competitor.”

Former Dodgers manager Joe Torre played against Koufax during play, and Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw also spoke at the ceremony.

“I hope the kid saw the statue and asked his mom or dad about Sandy Koufax. I hope they tell him he was a great pitcher, but more than that. He was a great person who represented the Dodgers in humility, kindness, passion, and class, “Kershaw said.

“And for all the newcomers who see it for the first time and ask if he was good. I hope the veterans simply tell him he was the best he’s ever had.” He said.


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Koufax gets a statue of Dodger Stadium next to Jackie Robinson | WGN Radio 720

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