In this striking picture book biography, an old-timer tells us what made Sandy Koufax such an amazing baseball player. We learn that the beginning of his career with the Brooklyn Dodgers was rocky, that he was shy with his teammates, and experienced discrimination as one of the only Jews in the game. We hear that he actually quit, only to return the next season—different—firing one rocket after another over the plate. We watch him refuse to play in the 1965 World Series because it is a Jewish high holy day. And we see him in pain because of an overused left arm, eventually retiring at the peak of his career. Finally, we are told that people are still “scratchin’ their heads over Sandy,” who remains a modest hero and a mystery to this day.
Accompanied by sidebars filled with statistics, this Parents Magazine Best Book of the Year and Booklist Top of the List is sure to delight budding baseball fans.
Jonah Winter is the author of Muhammed Ali: Champion of the World, Roberto Clemente, and Dizzy. He lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Andre Carrilho is the illustrator of Porch Lies by Patricia McKissack, which received three starred reviews. This is his first picture book. He lives in Lisbon, Portugal.
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