The sight of Sandy Koufax brings everyone to a standstill in the Dodgers' spring camp. Famously reclusive over the years, and rejecting any direct connections with the club, he's back in the public eye this year as a special instructor in uniform.
Imagine the privilege of watching Koufax demonstrate his curveball grip, or explain his mind-set in pressure situations against the Willie Mays-led Giants. The very image suggests world championships, fundamentally sound baseball and owners reluctant to give anyone a $100,000 contract.
Everything that does not apply to today's Dodgers, in other words.
They could run away with the division title, or they could be a complete bust. They either bought themselves a championship or exposed a $213 million payroll to ridicule. With the Giants visiting Camelback Ranch Stadium for a Tuesday exhibition, it seemed a proper time to compare the two teams as they prepare for the regular season: