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1962 Houston Colt .45's

From BR Bullpen


BR Team Page

Record: 64-96, Finished 8th in National League (1962 NL)

Managed by Harry Craft

Coaches: Jimmy Adair, Bobby Bragan, Jim Busby, Cot Deal and Lum Harris

Ballpark: Colt Stadium

History, Comments, Contributions[edit]

The 1962 Houston Colt .45s were the first major league team to play in Houston, TX, and the first edition of the team which would become the Houston Astros. They had been created, along with the New York Mets, in the 1962 expansion.

Unlike most expansion teams, the Colt .45's were a fairly old team. The batters were the second-oldest of any team in the league, and the pitchers were third-oldest. Perhaps because of this additional experience, they were not nearly as bad on the field as the "Amazin' Mets", as they managed to finish in a creditable 8th place in the ten-team National League, ahead of the Mets but also of the Chicago Cubs. However, this was largely smoke and mirrors, as the team would battle the Mets to stay out of the NL cellar for the remainder of the decade, until both teams suddenly became good in 1969.

The Colts played in temporary Colt Stadium, while the future Astrodome was being built next door. The ballpark was extremely hot during day games, and slightly less hot but infested by mosquitoes during night games. The team tried to play most of its games at night for the comfort of players and spectators (a daytime doubleheader on June 10th led to hundreds of fans and umpire Jocko Conlan being treated for heat prostration). As a result, the team won a special dispensation from the National League allowing it to play night games on Sundays until their new stadium was built.

In the off-season, Joe Morgan was signed as an amateur free agent. Jimmy Wynn was selected in the 1962 first-year draft.

Awards and Honors[edit]

1962 Opening Day Lineup[edit]

  1. Bob Aspromonte, 3b
  2. Al Spangler, cf
  3. Roman Mejias, rf
  4. Norm Larker, 1b
  5. Jim Pendleton, lf
  6. Hal Smith, c
  7. Joey Amalfitano, 2b
  8. Don Buddin, ss
  9. Bobby Shantz, p

Further Reading[edit]

  • Bill McCurdy: "Houston’s Role in the Initiation of Sunday Night Baseball", in Cecilia Tan, ed.: Baseball in the Space Age: Houston since 1961, 'The National Pastime, SABR, 2014, pp. 5-9.