Is Sandy Koufax Jewish?

Yes, former baseball star pitcher Sandy Koufax is a Jew. He is considered by some to be the most famous American Jew of our era.

According to Wikipedia, Koufax was born in Borough Park Brooklyn in 1935. He pitched for the Dodgers from 1955-1966.

We were checking out the best selling Judaism books on Amazon the other day. Sandy Koufax: A Lefty's Legacy was near the top of that list.

Wikipedia reports:

Koufax was the final player chosen in the inaugural Israel Baseball League draft in April 2007. Koufax, 71, was picked by the Modi'in Miracle. "His selection is a tribute to the esteem with which he is held by everyone associated with this league," said Art Shamsky, who managed the Miracle. "It's been 41 years between starts for him. If he's rested and ready to take the mound again, we want him on our team." Koufax declined to join the Miracle.

Sandy Koufax (center of first row) at first White House reception for Jewish American Heritage Month, May 27, 2010. At Koufax's right is Vice President Joe Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama

On May 27, 2010, Koufax was included among a group of prominent Jewish Americans at the first White House reception in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month. President Barack Obama recognized how well known Koufax's decision not to play on the Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur was in a humorous mention in his welcome remarks. Saying that he had "something in common" with Koufax, President Obama continued: "He can't pitch on Yom Kippur. I can't pitch." The President also directly acknowledged the high esteem in which Koufax is held:
"This is a pretty fancy ... pretty distinguished group," he said of the invited guests, which included members of the House and Senate, two justices of the Supreme Court, Olympic athletes, entrepreneurs, Rabbinical scholars, "and Sandy Koufax." The mention of his name brought the biggest cheer at the event.

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