Saturday, October 27, 2012

1956 Koufax, finally!




Funny thing about this card. I put together my Koufax collection back in the early 80s before I got out of collecting about 1990 or so. At some point after that I guess I convinced myself  that I had all of his cards. I know i thought that for years and when I began going to cards shows again a few years ago I never had any Koufax cards on my want lists.
Turns out I was wrong. When my kids moved out to go to college I reclaimed my 'office'. Back before we had three kids that room had been one of our back bedrooms and lined with shelves full of memorabilia and card binders. Then our family grew and my collection was boxed and stored. That is until I took back the room and unpacked many of my boxes. Going through my 'stuff' I made a discovery.
Not only was I missing two Koufax cards, one of them was the '56 Topps which had been one of my favorites. So a couple of years ago I decided that if I found a reasonable card at a reasonable price I'd grab it. I've had it on the back burner for quite some time. And last week, inspired perhaps by adding the long sought '58 Mantle All Star, I found one.
At $56 I couldn't pass it up. It's much nicer than others that were going in that range and higher. It's in a graded slab (and I have not yet attempted to free it, but I will) so the scan doesn't really show it off like it should. The bottom right corner is kind of soft and there is a surface crease but the card is bright and clear. There are comparable ones on eBay now going for twice what I paid.
I'm pretty happy with it. Now I will try to find my other missing Koufax, the '63 'Dodger's Big Three' special he shares with Don Drysdale and Johnny Podres.
My '55, his rookie card, is in pretty poor shape but I doubt I'd ever spend what it would take to upgrade it. Besides, truth be told, I like the '56 more. Koufax bears a striking resemblance to my late father in it. And even now, at 73 or so, he and my Dad could have been brothers.