December 2019 Holiday Premium Auction
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Built in 1962, Dodger Stadium is the oldest stadium in use in the National League. Built entirely with private funds over a three-year period, the baseball-only, 56,000 seat facility opened in Los Angeles with great fanfare. Led by their ace pitching staff including Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale and powered by the bats of Frank Howard and Tommy Davis, the Dodgers won 102 games in their inaugural campaign in their new home, but lost the pennant by one game to the rival Giants.

Thanks to utility infielder Andy Carey, playing in his 11th and final season in the big leagues, we have some of the clubhouse antics of the Boys in Blue captured on film. As Dodgers team historian Mark Langill noted in his eponymous book on the historic ballpark, Carey's behind-the-scenes photos started off as a gag, but became a documentary of the season, all taken on the veteran's Polaroid Land Camera. Twenty of Carey's photos were sold at the stadium and marketed under the title "Camera in a Clubhouse."

Offered here is the second of a pair of Koufax cards from this unheralded vintage set. Graded NM+ 7.5 by PSA, the single highest on record, this black-and-white photo card depicts Koufax, celebratory drink in hand, standing in front of a blackboard chalked with the score of the hurler's first career no-hitter, a 5-0 blanking of the expansion New York Mets on June 30, 1962. On the reverse is a little editorial note from the man behind the lens, Andy Carey, who writes that "This was a night Sandy will never forget—his no-hitter against the Mets—but we didn't want him to forget he got back to normal at the plate—'0 for 4.'" It would be hard to overstate the rarity of this piece; in nearly ten years of Small Traditions auctions, preceded by another decade of auction work, we've seen exactly three of these sets. This is the last copy we have available and may be the last copy we ever sell.
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