by Gene Elston
Gene Elston, the voice of the Houston Astros radio broadcasts from 1962 to 1986, is taking fans "back in time" to 1962, writing a series of daily updates to commemorate 40 years of major league baseball in Houston.
September 30, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park
41,327 anxious fans piled into Candlestick Park on a do or die afternoon with Billy O’Dell, winner of 19 and loser of 14 facing Houston’s Dick Farrell with a record of 10 and 19. O’Dell had beaten the .45s twice 3-2 and 10-3 and lost a 6-4 game. Farrell had earlier this season shutout the Giants 7-0 on a six-hit nine-strike out effort and lost his only other appearance 3-1. The only thing for sure as the game started was the weather – 70 degrees, under clear skies, the humidity at 68%, but much too early in the afternoon to predict what the winds would be doing in an hour or two. Officially at game time the wind is the usual soft breeze out of the southeast at five MPH.
With the Giants and the .45s tied at 1-1 after six innings the long awaited scoreboard watching ended with the electronic screen flashing the good news - St.Louis has beaten the Dodgers! And, the Giants were half way home.
Up to this point Ed Bailey had accounted for the home teams’ lead with his 17th home run in the fourth inning - until the 6th when Roman Mejias, Bob Aspromonte and Jim Pendelton each singled to tighten the knot at 1-1.
Farrell opened the 7th with a double but O’Dell left him on second base by retiring the next three Colts. Carl Warwick popped to the mound, Johnny Temple grounded to Jim Davenport at third and O’Dell got Mejias on a roller to Chuck Hiller at second. No one knew at the time - Turk would be the final Houston base runner.
The Giants loaded the bases in the seventh on a hit batter and two singles but Farrell kept the score 1-1 when he retired Matty Alou on a pop up to Temple at second base. The .45s were no match for Stu Miller in the top of the eighth with Warwick, Temple and Mejias going down in order.
There seemed to be a certain amount of anxiety emanating from the crowd as the Giants came to bat in the eighth, but when number 24 stepped to the on deck circle and then into the batters’ box, it seemed the crowd reaction changed from anxiety to hope. Mays had been held hitless this afternoon by Farrell – after drawing a base on balls in the first inning, Mays took a called third strike in the third and popped out to J.C. Hartman at short in the sixth. The cheers that greeted Mays moments ago would not even be a blip on the radar screen compared to the fans reaction that seemed to shake the very foundation of Candlestick as Mays deposited Farrell’s fast ball into the left-center field seats. Turk had been brilliant during this titanic struggle and kept his composure by retiring Willie McCovey on a fly ball to Warwick in center, Bailey on a fly to Mejias in right then faced his final batter of the year forcing Jim Davenport to go out shortstop Hartman to Norm Larker – but San Francisco led 2-1.
O’Dell had been lifted for a pinch hitter in the seventh and manager Alvin Dark had sent in Stu Miller to work the eighth. After retiring the Colts in order in his initial inning he started the ninth by getting Hal Smith on a line drive to Harvey Kuenn in left, pinch hitter Merritt Ranew (batting for Hartman) on a foul popup to catcher Ed Bailey and now facing the challenge of another pinch batter in Billy Goodman who was sent in to bat for Farrell (10-20). With all the Giants fans on their feet Miller ended the game as a top-notch closer should do - Goodman went down swinging as Miller (5-8) retired all nine of the nine batters he faced to seal the victory and end the 1962 regular season in a tie with Los Angeles - each with a 101-61 record.
Houston finished its inaugural major league season with 64 wins and 96 losses .400 in eighth place 36 and a-half games behind first. The team had faced an important final week against the pennant contenders and split the six games 2-1 against LA and 1-2 vs. San Francisco. We’ll leave with this note on pitcher Turk Farrell who worked the season’s final game to its completion for his eighth complete game striking out 203 in 241.2 innings while allowing only 210 hits, 55 walks and an ERA of 3.01. He won 10 and lost 20. Following today’s game he was asked by a writer how it felt to lose 20 games? His reply: “I must have been a pretty good pitcher if my manager sent be out every fifth day.” He was that good a pitcher starting 29 and relieving in 14 games.
October 1, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park
Game One - Los Angeles - 000-000-000 - 0 3 1 San Francisco - 210-002-03X - 8 10 0 WP - Pierce 16-6 HR - Mays (2), Davenport (1) LP - Koufax 14-7 Cepeda (1)
October 2, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
Game Two - San Francisco - 010-004-020 - 7 13 1 Los Angeles - 000-007-001 - 8 7 2 WP - Williams (14-12) LP - Bolin (7-3)
October 3, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
Game Three - San Francisco - 002-000-004 - 6 13 3 Los Angeles - 000-102-100 - 4 8 4 WP - Larsen (5-4) HR - Tommy Davis (1) LP - Roebuck (10-2)
HOUSTON BASEBALL HISTORY - 1888-1962
Houston made its first appearance in professional baseball as a member of the Texas League in 1888 and was represented in every year the circuit existed prior to 1900.
The league disbanded following the 1899 season and from 1903 to 1906, Houston was a member of the South Texas League. Houston rejoined the Texas League in 1907 and was a member continuously until joining the American Association in 1959.
October 17, 1960 - Houston, represented by Craig Cullinan, George Kirksey, R.E. Bob Smith and Roy Hofheinz, was voted a franchise in the National League.
January 17, 1961 - Houston Sports Association purchased Houston Buffaloes, American Association franchise, for an unclosed amount, removing last major obstacle for Houston’s major league status.
June 14, 1961 - Houston Sports Association signed contract for stands and seats for COLT STADIUM, the 32,000 seat auxiliary stadium to be used by 45’s in 1962.
August 29, 1961 - R. E. Bob Smith and Roy Hofheinz purchased 494 acres of land from Hilton Hotels Corporation for $5 million. 180 acres of this purchase was then sold to the county for the Harris County Domed Stadium.
October 10, 1961 - Houston purchased 23 players in National League player pool for $1,850,000 as nucleus of 1962 club.
October 13, 1961 - First day in history that a team played professional baseball under the name of Houston Colts, as Colt.22s began play in Arizona instructional league at Scottsdale, Arizona.
February 16, 1962 - First major league team in the south opened spring training at Apache Junction, Arizona.
March 10, 1962 - Palm Springs, California. The Houston Colt .45s, one of the two new kids on the block in the National League, along with the New York Mets, play their first official spring training game losing to the Los Angeles Angels 7-3.
Playing before a crowd of 2,797 on a clear 68 degree afternoon, Bob Bruce is the club's first starting pitcher. He goes three innings and is charged with the loss. Other pitchers working the game were Hal Woodeshick, Manny Montejo and Bobby Tiefenauer. Rightfielder Roman Mejias goes 3-for-4 with two singles and a double.
Interestingly, four participants in this game, Bob Lillis, Buck Rodgers, Jim Fregosi and Chuck Tanner would go to become major league managers.
Houston made its first appearance in professional baseball as a member of the Texas League in 1888 and was represented in every year the circuit existed prior to 1900.
March 11, 1962 - Palm Springs, California
The Colt .45s lay down a barrage of 13 hits but still lose to the Angels 8-7. Led by catcher Hal Smith's three singles and a three-run home run by Jim McDaniel, every starter had at least one hit except starting pitcher Bobby Shantz. Along with McDaniel's homer, he walked three times. Dick Farrell was the loser giving up five unearned runs following a Norm Larker error, Turk also allowed two hits, two walks and hit three batters.
March 12, 1962 - Apache Junction, Arizona
After losing their first two games to Los Angeles, the Colt .45s make their spring home debut at Geronimo Park and drop a 6-1 decision to San Francisco. Ken Johnson is the starter and loser with Dean Stone relieving and retiring all nine batters he faced. Don Larsen started for the the Giants and with three other pitchers scattered four Houston hits. Rusty Staub, only two weeks away from his 19th birthday, strikes out swinging in the fourth inning as a pinch hittter in his professional debut.
March 13, 1962 - Tucson, Arizona
Jim Umbricht pitches the Colt .45s to their first victory with three innings of work, allowing three hits while striking out three in a 2-1 win over the Cleveland Indians. Umbricht also singled in one of Houston's runs in the second with Jack Waters driving in the other with a single in the third. Jim Golden and Manny Montejo held the Tribe to four hits through the final six innings.
March 14, 1962 - Apache Junction, Arizona
Hal Woodeshick allows four runs on seven hits in the first two innings and is the losing pitcher in Houston's 6-3 loss to the Chicago Cubs. Houston's Von McDaniel goes 3-for-3 with a double after entering the game as a pinch hitter in the fifth inning. Bobby Tiefenauer, Ken Johnson and Ken Pate also pitched for the Colt .45s.
March 15, 1962 - Apache Junction, Arizona
Al Cicotte shuts down the Cleveland Indians with four hits through the first four innings in Houston’s 4-2 win. Dave Giusti works the final five and also allows four hits with Roman Mejias leading the offense with two singles.
March 16, 1962 - Scottsdale, Arizona
Bobby Shantz and Bob Bruce combine their 6-hit, no walk pitching into a 9-1 win over the Red Sox. The offense bangs out 11 hits, five for extra bases with Jack Waters going 3-for-4 - two doubles and four RBI. Bob Aspromonte opened the game with a home run and Jim Pendleton hit a 3-run shot in the fifth.
March 17, 1962 - Apache Junction, Arizona
The .45s take advantage of Bo Belinsky’s six walks, three hits and six runs in the first three innings, then hold on to a 12-7 win over Los Angeles. Meanwhile, Dean Stone, Ken Johnson and non-roster pitcher Bill Griffin are shelled with 13 hits while Houston is committing five errors. The .45s erupted for four runs in the 8th to sew up the win. Hal Smith was the star of the game with two walks, two doubles and the catcher's surprising steal of home off Belinsky.
March 18, 1962 - Apache Junction, Arizona
Houston and Los Angeles play through a total of 30 hits before the Angels unload for eight runs in the 11th inning off .45s pitcher Ken Pate for a 14-8 win. Houston was out-hit 18-12 with Bob Aspromonte and Jim Pendleton each hitting two-run homers. Aside from Pate’s bad inning, Jim Golden and Ken Johnson gave up six runs between them.
March 19, 1962 - Phoenix, Arizona
Hal Woodeshick and Bobby Tiefenauer are roughed up for 13 hits and nine runs by San Francisco, but the Colt .45s hold on for a 12-9 victory with 13 hits of their own. Each starting player had at least one hit, led by Roman Mejias, three, and seven of the eight got into the RBI column.
March 20, 1962 - Mesa, Arizona
March 21, 1962 - Apache Junction, Arizona
Houston nips Boston in 13-innings 8-7 on a single by non-roster first baseman Pidge Browne and a base hit by Don Taussig. It wasn’t a good day for pitchers with Hal Woodeshick and rookies Jim Dickson and Bill Griffin giving up 12 hits and four Red Sox pitchers allowing eleven. Hal Smith hit his first home run, a three run shot and Jim Pendleton hit his second.
March 22, 1962 - Mesa, Arizona
Houston racks up its third straight win with a 2-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs. Starter Bobby Shantz pitches seven innings for the win and Al Cicotte finishes. The Colt .45s two runs come in the sixth on singles by Bob Aspromonte and Roman Mejias, a walk to Dick Gernert and Jack Waters sacrifice fly.
March 23, 1962 - Scottsdale, Arizona
The Colt.45s knock off the Red Sox 8-5 for their fourth straight win. Down 5-3 after eight innings, Houston scores two runs in the ninth to tie on Johnny Weekly’s home run and a single by Joey Amalfitano. The winning run comes on a three-run homer by Pidge Browne.
March 24, 1962 - San Diego, California
Houston plays its first spring night game against the Los Angeles Angels and win their fifth straight 6-1. The Colt .45s score all their runs in the second inning on a bases loaded double by Johnny Weekly, a double by Dave Giusti, a single by Joey Amalfitano and four bases on balls. Giusti and Hal Woodeshick shared the pitching, holding the Angels to four hits. The game is played at Westgate Park, home of the San Diego Padres of the Pacific Coast League on a chilly evening before 1,890 fans.
March 25, 1962 - San Diego, California
The Angels break a 4-4 tie in the bottom of the seventh on two singles and Bob Aspromonte’s error. Then go on to a 5-4 victory over the Colt.45s. The loss snaps Houston’s five-game winning streak and moves the club’s record to 9-6. Jim Golden started for the Colts, pitching five innings and Dean Stone suffered the loss. Golden contributed a single and double in his two at-bats and shortstop Don Buddin hit his first spring homer.
March 26, 1962 - Yuma, Arizona
After taking off from San Diego the Colt .45s lose an engine on their DC6 but the United States Air Force appears on the scene to form a three-plane convoy (the Angels plane is nearby) and both the Houston and Los Angeles charters are escorted safely into the army base in Yuma. (in 1962 many of the athletes were "flying sissies"). Back to the field of battle the next day - Bob Bruce works seven innings and Jim Umbricht the last two, as they throw a four-hit shutout and beat Los Angeles 7-0. The Colts sewed up the win early off Angels pitcher Bo Belinsky with a five-run second inning, featuring a solo homer by Don Taussig and a grand slam by Joey Amalfitano. In two outings against the flamboyant Belinsky this spring, Houston has scored 14 runs on eight hits and 13 bases on balls in just nine innings. For lack of a press box in this desert city the Colt .45s radio network was given a prime spot right in the middle of the crowd numbering 2,150. It was a windy and sand-blown day and engineer Bob Green (yet to reach the experience-stature of the "Dean of Major League Technicians"), does his usual yeoman job of overcoming a disaster when an exuberant fan stumbles over him and dumps a soft drink on both Greenie and his valuable equipment -- thus the beginning of his record of never missing a broadcast inning.
March 27, 1962 - Phoenix, Arizona
The Colt.45s blow out the San Francisco Giants 11-4 with a 16-hit attack including five home runs - two each by Roman Mejias and Hal Smith and a solo shot by Pidge Browne. Bob Aspromonte goes 3-for-3 with two doubles and a single and Mejias adds a triple for his 11 total bases. Al Cicotte works five innings for the club’s 11th win in 17 games.
March 28, 1962 - Scottsdale, Arizona
The Colt.45s blow out the San Francisco Giants 11-4 with a 16-hit attack including five home runs - two each by Roman Mejias and Hal Smith and a solo shot by Pidge Browne. Bob Aspromonte goes 3-for-3 with two doubles and a single and Mejias adds a triple for his 11 total bases. Al Cicotte works five innings for the club’s 11th win in 17 games.
March 29, 1962 - Mesa, Arizona
The Cubs get to starter Dave Giusti early with four runs and six hits in four innings and Chicago goes on to a 7-5 win over the Colt.45s. Hal Smith hits a three-run homer in the 4th to cut the Cubs lead to one run. It's Smith fifth homer of the spring and brings his RBI total to 18. Roman Mejias who entered the game batting .408, goes 2-for-4. Giusti started the game with ERA of 2.08 as his record fell to 2-1.
April 10, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
On a cloudy afternoon at Colt Stadium the Colt.45s inaugurate major league baseball in Houston. With flags flying and the sound of Dixie Land music 25,271 fans clog the parking lots to see their home town heroes knock off he Cubs 11-2.
Roman Mejias, who led the Colts during the spring with an average of .397, continues his torrid hitting with two home runs and six RBI in the club’s 13 hit attack off five Chicago pitchers. Veteran Bobby Shantz goes the distance with a five-hitter and exhibits his usual dazzling fielding with three assists. Ernie Banks accounts for one of the Cubs runs with a 7th inning homer and Jim McDaniel’s pinch triple, and Lou Brock’s sacrifice fly accounts for the other run. Catcher Hal Smith joins Mejias with a homer and Bob Aspromonte picks up three hits.
The starting lineups for this historic game:
UMPIRES: plate-Dusty Boggess, 1B-Stan Landes, 2B-Vinnie Smith, 3B-Mel Steiner
April 11, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Hal Woodeshick shuts out Chicago for eight innings and Dick Farrell wraps up the win in the ninth as the Colt .45s knock off the Cubs 2-0. Woodeshick left the game after a walk and single to open the ninth and Farrell closed it with a double play ball and strike out. Both Houston runs come in the first inning off Chicago’s Glenn Hobbie on a single by Al Spangler, walks to Norm Larker and Jim Pendleton and a base hit by Hal Smith. Roman Mejias had two hits for the Colts and Ernie Banks had three singles for Chicago.
20,336 watched the first night game at Colt Stadium with a strong Southeast wind at 10-miles per hour and a temperature of 77. The humidity was 97%.
April 12, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Only 7,838 paid fans show up at Colt Stadium to see Houston sweep its three-game series from the Cubs, in which Chicago scored only two runs. Dean Stone spins a three-hit shutout as the Colt.45s win 2-0. Houston now will hit the road with 19 straight shutout innings moving into Philadelphia tomorrow.
Stone strikes out nine Chicago batters while three Cubs pitcher were holding the Colts to four hits. Hal Smith singled in the first Houston run in the 4th inning following a walk to Joey Amalfitano and a base hit by Dick Gernert. Chicago pitcher Joe Gerard gave up a two-out single in the 9th to Bob Aspromonte, who followed with a steal of second and scored on two wild pitches.
April 13, 1962 - Philadelphia, Connie Mack Stadium
The Colt.45s drop a 3-2 decision to the Phillies at Connie Mack Stadium on a rainy 40-degree night with a 15-MPH wind gusting to 25. Philadelphia rookie righthander Jack Hamilton bested Houston’s Turk Farrell and Bobby Tiefenauer, despite their 4-hit effort. Each allowed two hits and Farrell struck out nine in six innings, but walked five. Two bases on balls by Farrell and a single by Clay Dalrymple accounted for one of Philadelphia’s runs and Tony Taylor homered in the sixth and doubled in the leading run in the eighth. The Colt .45s two runs, oddly enough came across the plate on Hamilton’s wild pitch and the other on his balk. Houston had seven hits, two each by Norm Larker and Joey Amalfitano.
April 14, 1962 - Philadelphia, Connie Mack Stadium
Neither the weather nor Phillies pitching cooperates with the Colt.45s as they drop a 3-0 decision on a chilly afternoon game. Philadelphia righthander Art Mahaffey, who was on the ropes in the first two innings, allows only three hits in the last seven. Houston batters came up with two hits each in the first and second innings, and all four were stranded. Meanwhile, loser Ken Johnson pitched well for Houston before weakening in the sixth and seventh innings when he allowed all three of the Phillies runs on five of their six hits. All seven of the Colt .45s hits were singles with Roman Mejias, Norm Larker and Don Buddin picking up two each. Only 2,732 fans attended with the temperature at 45 degrees and winds gusting 15-25 miles per hour.
April 15, 1962 - Philadelphia, Connie Mack Stadium
Both ends of today’s Doubleheader are postponed - rain and cold.
April 16, 1962 - New York, Polo Grounds
Colts have their third straight game postponed - snow and cold.
The Colt .45s win 5-3 over the Mets in the first meeting of the two National League expansion teams. All five of Houston’s runs come on round-trippers, a two-run home by Norm Larker in the sixth inning and a three-run shot by Don Buddin wins the game in the 11th. Hal Smith and Joey Amalfitano had singled ahead of his homer. After scoring a run in the eighth New York sends the game into overtime in the last of the 9th on Gus Bell’s home run. Starter Bobby Shantz was lifted with two-out in the sixth without allowing a run, giving up only four hits, striking out five and allowing only one walk. Jim Golden was the winning pitcher. Roman Mejias continued his plus .400 hitting going 3-for-4.
April 18, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field
Cubs lefthander Dick Ellsworth goes all ten innings against the Colt .45s and chalks up a 3-2 victory. Houston pulled out to a 2-1 lead with single runs in the fourth and fifth innings, but Chicago tied it in the seventh, and won it after two were out in the bottom of the tenth. Ernie Banks, who had tripled in the first Cubs run off starter Hal Woodeshick, and added singles in the sixth and seventh, hit the winning home run into a 12 mile-an-hour wind blowing in from Lake Michigan off Dick Farrell. Center fielder Al Heist, making his first start of the season after breaking his ankle in the first spring exhibition game, went 2-for-4.
April 19, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field
Dean Stone, following his shutout over the Cubs on April 12, repeats with another, this one a five-hitter, as he knocks off Chicago 6-0. In his 18 innings against the Cubs he has allowed only eight hits, struck out 12 and walked three. Meanwhile, the Colt .45s pummel four Chicago pitchers with 12 hits, led by catcher Merritt Ranew’s double and two singles. Johnny Weekly, who replaced Roman Mejias in right field in the fifth inning, and making only his second plate appearance of the year, homers off losing pitcher Don Cardwell in the seventh. After their first eight games Houston holds a 5-3 record, is in fourth place in the National League and three games out of first place.
April 20, 1962 - OPEN DATE
April 21, 1962 – Houston, Colt Stadium
Returning from their first road trip, winning two games out of five, the Colt .45s play before a crowd of 21,841 and lose to Philadelphia 3-1. Ken Johnson (0-2) gives up six hits in seven innings and strikes out six. Houston scores its only run on a double by Jim Pendleton, with Joey Amalfitano picking up the RBI on a single. It was Pendleton’s second two-bagger of the game, he also added a base hit to account for three of the Colts eight hits off winner Cal McLish and reliever Jack Baldschun. Al Spangler also chipped in with two singles in the losing cause.
April 22, 1962 – Houston, Colt Stadium
After dropping their first three games to the Phillies (3-2,3-0,3-1) Houston loses another close one 4-3 in an error-prone game. Miscues by starting pitcher Dave Giusti (0-1) and Jim Pendleton lead to two of Philadelphia’s runs, with Norm Larker and Merritt Ranew pushing the error count to four. Giusti is knocked out in the seventh inning giving up all four Phillies runs on eight hits, but he had better luck at the plate going 2-for-2 and scoring a run. Hal Smith contributed a single and double, Al Spangler two singles, Larker an RBI on a sacrifice fly and the clubs’ leading hitter, Roman Mejias (.378), driving in his seventh run of the season with a triple.
April 23, 1962 - FINAL GAME OF SERIES WITH PHILADELPHIA - RAINED OUT
April 24, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Colt .45s continue their ragged fielding with five errors but still manage a 4-3 win over St. Louis. Hal Woodeshick (2-0) pitches a complete game, holding the Cardinals to six hits while striking out seven. Don Taussig’s first home run of the year in the seventh inning proves to be the winning run. Bob Aspromonte, Al Spangler and shortstop Bob Lillis, making his first start of the season, each had two of Houston’s seven hits. 19,335 attended on a beautiful 77-degree evening (many of whom came mainly to see Musial) saw “Stan the Man” strike out, ground out and fly out off Woodeshick.
April 25, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Colt .45s and St. Louis stagger through 17 innings for five hours and 13 minutes, but have little to show for it in a 5-5 tie. The game was called because of curfew and must be replayed in it's entirety, although all individual records are official. Houston went through five pitchers and the Cardinals used four. St.Louis tied the game in the top of the ninth and the only threat made by the Colts after that came in the 15th when they loaded the bases with one out and failed to score. St.Louis left two runners in scoring position in the final eight innings and Houston stranded three. There were two home runs in the game, a two-run shot by Curt Flood in the fourth and a solo home run by Merritt Ranew in the eighth inning. Ranew (The Fox) went 4-for-6 in catching the entire game. The 17,265 who attended, some hoping to see Stan Musial, saw him enter in the 10th as a pinch-hitter and strike out swinging at the hands of Dick Farrell (whom, as I recall. said he got “Stan The Man” with a spitter). There was no official count of the number of fans in Colt Stadium when the game was called at 1:13 a.m.
April 26, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Cardinals pitcher Bob Gibson has a no-hitter going into the eighth inning but Roman Mejias breaks it up with a lead-off homer (#7). Al Heist follows with the only other hit off Gibson, a single, and St.Louis goes on to win 3-2. Colt .45s pitcher Ken Johnson (0-3) is also tough, but falls short of the brilliant 26-year-old Gibson, spinning an eight-hitter while striking out eight Red Birds.
Houston takes a second inning lead off Gibson on a walk to Jim Pendleton, and during the process of eliminating Roman Mejias, and Merritt Ranew on infield ground-outs, throws a wild pitch and Pendleton scores. St.Louis second baseman Julian Javier leads off the fourth inning with a home run to tie the game at 1-1. The Cardinals take a 2-1 lead in the seventh when Gene Oliver reaches second on a throwing error by Bob Aspromonte and Oliver scores on Julio Gotay’s base hit. Mejias then hits his homer to lead off the eighth and it’s tied 2-2 for the second time. St.Louis comes back in the bottom of the eighth with a lead-off single by Curt Flood and with two outs Stan Musial, 0-for-7 in the series, singles in Flood for the winning run and his 12th run batted in the young season.
April 27, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Colt .45s are subjected to another low-hit loss (and another unearned run) as Milwaukee’s Bob Shaw throws a four-hitter and Houston goes down to a 2-1 defeat. The team entered the game with a .234 team batting average and the only run came on Jim Pendleton’s first homer of the season. The Colts other three hits were scattered by Shaw among Roman Mejias, Hal Smith and Bob Lillis. Losing pitcher Bobby Shantz (1-1) worked the first six innings and allowed six hits while striking out five. Amazingly, the little guy showed his defensive prowess once again with four more assists, (running his total to nine in three games). Milwaukee catcher Del Crandall singled in the Braves first run in the second, following a base hit by Joe Adcock. Pendleton’s home run tied the game in the fourth inning and Hank Aaron, after an error by Joey Amalfitano, tripled in the winning run.
April 28, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Milwaukee slugs the Colt.45s for 14 hits in a 9-3 win with most of the damage coming off starter Dave Giusti and Al Cicotte. Giusti (0-2) allowed five runs and seven hits in his 5.1 innings while Cicotte, working only 1.2 innings, is bombed for three runs and six hits. The Braves rolled up a four-run ninth inning off Cicotte and Jim Umbricht, with Mack Jones hitting the only home run of game with Hank Aaron aboard. Three Milwaukee players each had three-hits – Eddie Mathews, Denis Menke and Joe Torre. Al Spangler had a perfect night at the plate with a walk, three singles and a triple moving his average from .256 to .319. The weather was also perfect – 75 degrees, wind south at ten and the humidity a “low” 72%. Attendance: 22,501.
April 29, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston salvages the final game of the three-game series with Milwaukee on a ninth inning home run by Roman Mejias, 3-2. Starter Hal Woodeshick was lifted in the top of the ninth inning with the Colt.45s leading 2-1 after he gave up a single to Hank Aaron, a tying-run base hit by Joe Adcock and a walk to Frank Bolling. Turk Farrell (1-0) took over for Woodeshick and forced Adcock on Del Crandall’s ground ball to third baseman Bob Lillis. Don McMahon had relieved starter Lew Burdette in the eighth and after a scoreless inning served up the winning homer to Mejias (#4). The Colt.45s other two runs came on homers by Hal Smith and Jim Pendleton. The Colts finish the home stand with a 7-8 record in fifth place and five games out of first.
April 30, 1962 - OPEN DATE
May 1, 1962 - St.Louis, Sportsman’s Park
Dean Stone is knocked out in the first inning, allowing five runs, three walks and three hits while retiring only one batter as the Cardinals win 6-4. Stone (2-1) had started the season with two shutouts against Chicago, but was also KO’d in the fourth inning by the Cardinals in his last start – the tie game called by curfew after 17-innings on April 25th.
Jim Golden, Bob Bruce and Bobby Tiefenauer held the Red Birds to one run and four hits the remainder of the game, but the Colt.45s couldn’t catch up despite picking up nine hits off Ray Washburn. Jim Pendleton and Pidge Browne each drove in two runs with two RBI and Al Spangler chipped in two singles.
May 2, 1962 - St.Louis, Sportsman’s Park
The Cardinals Bob Gibson beats the Colt.45s for the second time, and in each case Ken Johnson (0-4) is the loser, 4-1. Gibson was on his game again following his two-hitter against Houston on April 26th . Jim Pendleton’s homer accounted for the only run off the 26-year-old righthander as he struck out nine while holding the Colts to five hits. It was a big strikeout game for Johnson also – he got ten Red Birds while allowing nine hits. St.Louis scored three of their runs in the fourth inning, one on Bill White’s homer, and the other two were unearned as the result of an error by Al Spangler.
May 3, 1962 - St.Louis, Sportsman’s Park
St.Louis completes a sweep of the three-game series with the Colts behind the pitching of veteran lefty Curt Simmons 4-0. Simmons entered the game with a 1.67 ERA and chalks up his fourth win without a loss. Houston starter Dave Giusti (0-3) was victimized by home runs from Bill White and Curt Flood in the first three innings. as the Cardinals built an early 3-1 lead. Only two runners reached second base off Simmons as he accounted for 15 ground-ball outs and spaced the seven hits to one-each in innings two-through-eight. Dick Gernert and Johnny Weekly hit safely twice, with Weekly’s two-bagger the only extra-base hit off Simmons. In the first six meetings with St.Louis the Colts have won one game, lost four and tied one. However, for the record, Stan Musial, who will 42 years old in November, and playing in his next to final season in the National League, has been held to only one hit 13 at-bats - little solace to a club with a 7-11 record as they fly to Milwaukee.
May 4, 1962 - Milwaukee, County Stadium
Trailing 4-0 going into the third the Colt .45s peck away and go on to beat Milwaukee 7-4. Hal Woodeshick, after his third straight win, gives up four Braves runs on three hits and a walk to the first four batters he faces and is KO’d after pitching only two-thirds of an inning. Bob Bruce relieves and allows only four hits ,while striking out ten before getting into trouble in the ninth. Dick Farrell takes over for Bruce (1-0) with runners on first and second and no-outs, and retires the next three Milwaukee batters, including two on strikes. Hal Smith and Jim Pendleton led the Houston offense, each going 2-for-4, each hitting a home run. Roman Mejias, whose batting average had dropped to .286, went 2-for-5 and added eight points to his season’s average.
May 5, 1962 - Milwaukee, County Stadium Braves right fielder Mack Jones homers with one out in the bottom of the 12th off Hal Woodeshick (2-1) to give Milwaukee a 6-5 win over the Colt .45s. Houston led 3-2 going into the eighth inning and solo homers by Norm Larker and Bob Aspromonte upped the lead to 5-2. However, both starting pitcher Dean Stone (two hits, two runs) and his relief Bobby Tiefenauer (two hits, one run) were knocked out in the bottom of the inning creating a 5-5 tie. Ken Johnson was called in to pitch and he allowed the 5th hit of the inning that scored the 3rd run. The game was played through intermittent rain on a fairly warm for Wisconsin (67 degrees) May afternoon before a house of 4,920. This was a big-hit day for both teams with Houston pounding out 17 and the Braves 13. Larker went 4-for-6 (homer, two doubles, single) and Aspromonte, who has been struggling at the plate all spring, going 4-for-6 (homer, double and two singles) finally pulling his average over the .200 mark.
May 6, 1962 - Milwaukee, County Stadium In the first game of a doubleheader, lefty Warren Spahn spins his magic over Houston, and catcher Del Crandall delivers a winning home run, breaking a tie in the fourth inning to put the Braves in the win column 3-2. Jim Golden (1-1) goes the distance for the Colt .45s and Roman Mejias drives in both runs with his club-leading fifth home run and 11th RBI - he also contributes two singles. Shortstop Bobby Lillis chips in with three singles.
Mejias continues his banner day in the nightcap with two more home runs and five runs batted in as the Colts clobber four Milwaukee pitchers 9-1 on a 12 hit attack to gain a split. Norm Larker and Pidge Browne also hit for the circuit with Browne adding a double and single. Turk Farrell had his 95 MHP-plus fast ball working, and as Loel Passe said, he breezed the Braves, not only one-more-time, but a total of eleven, pitching a four-hitter.
Following the game publicity director Bill Giles announces the first major trade of the season, with the Colt.45s acquiring outfielder Carl Warwick and pitcher John Anderson from St.Louis for Bobby Shantz.
The road trip to St.Louis and Milwaukee obviously was not a good one as the Colt.45s finish with a 2-5 mark. It’s back to Houston tomorrow to begin a seven-game home stand against Los Angeles and San Francisco. After 23 games the club a has record of 10-13 and currently is in 7th place, eight and one-half games out of first.
May 7, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium 19,860 turn out to see their team following a disastrous road trip and the Colts respond with a 9-6 win over Los Angeles. Dodgers rookie starter Joe Moeller is wild from the start, but his downfall comes on two errors giving the Colt.45s four unearned runs and a 5-0 lead. Los Angeles pecked away at starter Dave Guisti and finally KO’d him in the 6th. Al Cicotte relieved and gave up the base hit that gave LA a 6-5 lead. Houston stormed back in the seventh inning on Bob Aspromonte’s three-run homer, that capped a three-hit day for the third baseman and Johnny Weekly added another home run in the 8th. Bobby Tiefenauer pitched the last three innings picking up his first decision of the year.
May 8, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium The Colt.45s score two runs in the seventh inning to tie, but the Dodgers jump on Bobby Tiefenauer (1-1) for three runs in the 10th to win 9-6. Los Angeles came up with a 15-hit attack against five Houston pitchers called to the firing line by manager Harry Craft. Ken Johnson, still winless in four starts, is gone after working 2.2 innings. Sandy Koufax, in his eighth season with Brooklyn/Los Angeles, and a career record of 59-54, starts and leaves the game with a 6-4 lead. He was knocked out after 5.2 innings. The lefty gave up four runs, seven hits, walked two and struck out eight. Newly acquired Carl Warwick started in centerfield and singled in two official at-bats. He also drew a base on balls and was hit by a pitch. 18,138 watched.
May 9, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium Los Angeles leads all the way with 16 hits and the complete game pitching of Johnny Podres to down the Colt.45s 9-2. Dean Stone (2-2) making his sixth start continues to struggle and is relieved after 6.1 innings giving up four runs and eleven hits. Dave Giusti, moved to the bullpen after an 0-3 start, is also shelled in his one inning of relief allowing four runs. Catcher Merritt Ranew spoke up for most of Houston’s offense with two triples and a single, accounting for three of the club’s eight hits and scoring both of the Colt runs. The Colt.45s announced following the game the purchase of righthander Don McMahon from Milwaukee. The purchase price was not announced. General Manager Paul Richards said McMahon would be used exclusively out of the bullpen, the same capacity in which he spent all six of his major league seasons with the Braves.
May 10, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium Don Drysdale wins his 5th outing of the season as he spins a three-hitter in a 6-2 win over the Colt.45s. The two runs off the 25-year old veteran came on home runs by Roman Mejias and Carl Warwick. Mejias hit his 8th of the season in the first inning and Warwick picked up his first Houston round tripper in the ninth, giving him two for the season, the first coming with the Cardinals. The only other hit off Drysdale was a double by Merritt Ranew. Bob Bruce (1-1) struck out eight Dodgers but served up a three-run homer to LA second baseman Larry Burright following two bases on balls. The total crowd was announced as 21,999 - 6,923 were comps - and the weather was delightful - 75 degrees, clear, wind 20 MPH blowing out of left and, oh-yes, the humidity was 67%.
SPECIAL NOTE ON DON MCMAHON: Most of us around the game have used the term FIREMAN in relation to a pitcher used in relief exclusively. It was a term first given to Johnny (Grandma) Murphy who pitched for the Yankees 1932-1947 - probably around 1939-1941.
HOWEVER, there is a secondary meaning of FIREMAN in baseball lore established during the same period or earlier. A player who was a fast-dresser following the game was referred to as a FIREMAN (relating to the men in the firehouse who got out bed and dressed to get on the truck). In baseball it was -- game over, into clubhouse, uniform off, shower, into street clothes and out the door. I remember during McMahon’s tenure with the Braves he was known as the pace-setter with a record of four and-a-half minutes.
May 11, 1962 - Colt Stadium
Dick Farrell (3-2) completely mesmerizes San Francisco with a six hit, nine strikeout complete game victory 7-0 before 19,003. His pitching opponent, rookie Gaylord Perry, making the fifth start of his major league career, is knocked out in the second inning, giving up three runs, two of them coming on Carl Warwick’s double and a single by Bob Aspromonte. With Don Larsen pitching in the fifth both Merritt Ranew and Farrell unload solo homers off the veteran righthander, now in his 10th season. Farrell’s only tight spot came in the first inning when he walked Willie Mays with one out, gave up a single to Willie McCovey, struck out Orlando Cepeda swinging - on a double steal hit and run by Mays and McCovey - then walked Felipe Alou to load the bases. Farrell got out of the jam by getting Tom Haller on a pop out to third. Turk stranded eight men on base, three in scoring position.
May 12, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Before 26,311 at Colt Stadium Juan Marichal tosses a four-hitter and leads San Francisco to an 11-0 victory over Houston. Bob Lillis is the only Colt to reach second base off the Dominican righthander – he opened the sixth inning with a base hit and moved up on a walk to Norm Larker. Bob Aspromonte hit two singles off Marichal and Roman Mejias had the other base hit.
Houston starter Hal Woodeshick (2-2) was blasted out in the second inning allowing four runs and two bases on balls. That was only the beginning of a 13-hit evening for the Giants. Jim Golden who relieved Woody is removed after 3.1 innings in a six-run rally highlighted by Jim Davenport’s three-run homer. Only one of the runs was earned off Golden because of a Lillis error. San Francisco came up with six hits off Golden and John Anderson and Don McMahon finished the blow out, each working two innings, each giving up two hits. It was Anderson’s first appearance since being acquired from St.Louis on May 6. The club announced following the game that coach Jim Busby has been activated, but will maintain his duties as a coach for manager Harry Craft. Busby will be used as a backup catcher and outfielder as well as pinch hitter.
May 13, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Ken Johnson goes down to his fifth straight loss without a win as the Giants defeat the Colt .45s 7-2. Trailing 1-0, Johnson weakened in the sixth and his downfall was culminated on Jose Pagan’s two run home run that put him behind 5-0. Dave Giusti had his second poor day out of the bullpen, pitching the final three innings allowing two runs and six hits. The 22-year-old, like Johnson, was without a win in four starts before being moved to the pen. Houston did little to San Francisco starter Jack Sanford until he allowed his only two runs in the ninth. He had a three-hitter with one out until pinch hitter Al Spangler walked and Pidge Browne, also pinch hitting, singled. Roman Mejias drove in his club-leading 19th run with a double and Norm Larker came up with a base hit to score Mejias. The home stand ended with a 2-4 mark dropping the club to 8th place (in the 10-team circuit) 12 and one-half games out of first.
May 14, 1962 - OPEN DATE
16-year American League veteran infielder Billy Goodman, 11 years with the Red Sox and more recently with the White Sox, is signed as a free agent by the Colt .45s.
May 15, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
The Colt .45s jock Don Drysdale in the fourth inning but a late rally by Los Angeles turns into a 10-7 loss. The Dodgers had jumped to a 1-0 lead in the first but Houston banged out five runs and six hits off Drysdale for 5-1 lead, only to succumb to a six-run rally in the 7th on six hits off starter Bob Bruce, Bobby Tiefenauer and Don McMahon. The loss was charged to Tiefenauer (1-2).
Billy Goodman made his debut at third as Harry Craft moved Bob Aspromonte to short, which was Aspro’s primary position when he broke in with Los Angeles in 1960/61. Goodman batted second in the order and singled twice in five times at-bat. Norm Larker had three hits, one a double with an RBI and Carl Warwick produced a single and a two- bagger with two runs batted in. Shortstop Maury Wills drove in five runs in the Dodgers 12 hit attack, while the Colt.45 came up with 11 hits. Each team committed three errors.
May 16, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
Turk Farrell gets off to a wild start walking the first two batters, both score, and the Colt.45s never catch up losing to the Dodgers 5-2. Farrell (3-3) is lifted after six innings allowing all of the Dodgers five runs, five hits, four walks and a wild pitch. He struck out six, running his K total to 48 in 43 innings. Houston out hit LA 11-6 but stranded ten runners. Al Spangler and Roman Mejias each had three hits with Mejias picking up Houston’s only run batted in. The other Colt run scored on a Los Angeles error. Houston entered the game with a team batting average of .215.
May 17, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
The Dodgers rally from a four-run deficit to tie in the ninth inning and go on to win 5-4 in the 10th. This is a tough loss for both the club and starter Jim Golden. The ex-Dodger had a two-hit shutout going into the 9th but Maury Wills and Jim Gilliam singled to open the frame and Wally Moon doubled both home. Bobby Tiefenauer (1-3) lost his third straight relief appearance allowing the winning run in the 10th on three hits. The Colt .45s have now lost five in a row, their longest losing streak of the year, and also have dropped six straight to Los Angeles. Carl Warwick homered and Jim Pendleton, Norm Larker, Hal Smith and Joey Amalfitano had two hits each – Amalfitano snapped an O-for-14 (his average had fallen to .187) with a first inning single and then doubled in the 9th but was stranded. Shortstop Bob Lillis had a unique game, his scorecard read five putouts to the outfield – 7,7,9,8,8.
May 18, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park
The Colt .45s snap their five-game losing streak behind Ken Johnson’s four-hitter in knocking off the Giants 3-2 in ten innings. This is Johnson’s first win of the year following five defeats and a six-game ERA of 4.16. Johnson trailed the Giants 1-0 after the second inning when he gave up two hits and two walks. Norm Larker tied the game in the 5th inning with his fourth homer of the year and in the sixth inning a walk to Joey Amalfitano, Al Spangler’s base hit, an error on Willie McCovey and a sacrifice fly by Roman Mejias put the Colt.45s out in front 2-1. Following the early lead in the second inning Johnson retired 20 batters while giving up two harmless walks, in taking a two hitter into the ninth. After striking out Orlando Cepeda, McCovey’s home run tied it up 2-2.
Carl Warwick led off the 10th inning with a single, moved to second on a sacrifice by pinch hitter Merritt Ranew and Bob Aspromonte accounted for the second out on a ground ball. Joey Amalfitano was walked intentionally to get to Johnson, and it might be of interest to look at Johnson’s batting record for the young season as he stepped to the plate to face Jack Sanford – K,DP,K,K,K,K,K,K,K,6-3,K,F2,and 8 – that’s O-for-13 and Harry Craft leeaves Johnson in to hit for himself - he singles to drive in Warwick with the lead run 3-2. Johnson (1-5) gave up his fourth hit to Tom Haller to open the bottom of the 10th then salted the away the win with three ground ball outs.
May 19, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park
6-3, 195 pound George Witt, making his first start for the Colt .45s, is cashiered with one out in the second inning by the Giants after giving up four runs on a walk and three hits. His blow-out was the beginning of a 14 hit rout and a 10-2 San Francisco victory. It was Witt’s 14th major league loss against 11 wins in his six seasons while pitching previously with the Los Angeles and Pittsburgh. Dave Guisti, following an 0-3 record as a starter, continues to follow the same ineffectiveness out of the bullpen with his third bad relief appearance. The 22-year-old rookie allowed five runs in his 4.2 innings and three of them came on three solo home runs in the 7th by Willie Mays, Orlando Cepeda and Ed Bailey. Mays jumped on Houston pitching for four hits in five trips for eight total bases. The Colt .45s scored both their runs in the seventh on a single by Jim Pendleton, a triple by Bob Aspromonte and a pinch single by Jim Busby, his first at-bat since his recent activation and he remained in the game to catch the last inning.
A TEST OF YOUR BASEBALL GRAY MATTER.
This test is prompted by Boston pitcher Derek Lowe’s no-hitter recently. Lowe is the 11th to pitch a no-hit game in Fenway Park since it opened in 1912. Fenway is now in its 91st year of playing host to those eleven gems, however ONE of the eleven was unique in a way (to my knowledge) as the only one in history to hold this distinction.
YOUR ASSIGNMENT – NAME THAT GAME AND WHY IT WAS SO UNIQUE
May 20, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park
The Colt .45s get out in front early and manage to stave off a late push by the Giants and hold on for a 6-5 win in the opening game of a doubleheader. An error on third baseman Jim Davenport leads to a first inning run on hits by Norm Larker and Carl Warwick. The club then opened a 5-1 lead in the third as Juan Marichal is battered - four runs on another hit by Larker and run-scoring singles by Joey Amalfitano and Bob Bruce. Bruce (2-1) coasted into the 9th with a four-hitter but surrendered two runs before Dick Farrell bailed him out. Turk got Chuck Hiller on a sac-fly then struck out Willie Mays. Bruce gave up six bases on balls, struck out six and was touched with a solo home run by Willie McCovey on his way to a six-hitter. Houston banged out 11 hits with Roman Mejias and Bob Aspromonte getting two each as did Larker and Warwick.
In the nightcap before 40,932 the Colts lose 7-4 to veteran lefthander Billy Pierce, in his first season with Giants following 15 years in the American League with the White Sox and Tigers. This was Pierce’s sixth win in six starts giving him 195 career victories. Hal Woodeshick (2-3) gave Pierce plenty of breathing room as Woody was lifted in the first inning leaving behind six runs, five hits and three walks after facing only seven batters. Aspromonte led the Colt.45s with three hits, two RBI on his 3rd home run and two singles. Aspro raised his average to .281 after hitting a low of .178. The Colts finished another lousy road trip 2-5 but managed to hold on to 8th place (two games out of sixth) - 12 and-a-half games from the top.
May 21, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Colt .45s starter Jim Golden (2-1) despite an early deficit, pitches a complete game victory 3-2 over the New York Mets. Down 2-0 after two innings, Houston tied the game in the third. Don Buddin tripled to open the inning, scored on Golden’s grounder to first, and after Al Spangler singled, then stole second, Buddin scored on Billy Goodman’s base hit. This prompted NY manager Casey Stengel to lift starter Dave Hillman and bring in Vinegar Bend Mizell. Mizell held the tie until the eighth when pinch hitter Jim Pendleton tripled and scored on Roman Mejias’ sacrifice fly. Golden held on for the complete game win despite allowing two hits in the ninth.
May 22, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Dick Farrell (4-3) gives up ten hits while pitching his third complete game in five starts in a 3-2 win over New York. Turk fell behind 1-0 in the fourth but Roman Mejias countered with a solo home run (#9) to tie in the bottom of the inning. The .45s snapped the tie in the 8th scoring two runs after two outs on Billy Goodman’s single, Mejias second hit of the game and a triple by Norm Larker, also his second hit. Farrell was touched for one run and three hits in the ninth but left two batters stranded for a total of nine Mets left on base.
May 23, 1962 - Colt Stadium
Ken Johnson throws his second straight complete game, a five-hit gem against Cincinnati 2-0. The 28-year-old righthander was coming off a 10 inning 3-2 four-hitter over San Francisco - it moved his record to 2-5 and lowered his ERA in the past two games from 4.16 to 3.11. He bested Bob Purkey, one of the hottest pitchers in the league, who also went the distance for his first loss of the season after seven wins. The Colts scored their first run in the fourth on Norm Larker’s single and a two-base hit by Carl Warwick. Houston scored their final run in the eighth on Don Buddin’s double and Al Spangler’s single. Houston’s last four wins have been 3-2, 6-5, 3-2 and 2-0.
May 24, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Joey Jay, a 6-4 230 pound righthander, off a 21 win season with the Reds in 1961, shuts out the Colt .45s 5-0 for his sixth win on a six-hitter. On the Houston side, starter George Witt (0-2) is removed in the fifth inning after allowing two runs and six hits. His relief, Dave Giusti, lasted only 2.1 innings as Cincinnati punished him with three runs and six hits. In Giusti’s last three relief appearances he has allowed 17 hits and 10 runs in 12 innings. Jay literally hung the Colts offense out to dry except for Al Spangler (2-for-2) and Merritt Ranew (2-for-4). Ranew was the lone runner to reach third base hitting his fifth triple of the year in the seventh inning. Cincinnati spewed 14 hits off four Houston throwers led by Don Blasingame’s perfect day at the plate, two singles a double and a triple.
May 25, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston and Pittsburgh battle for three hours and 51 minutes through 13 innings before pinch hitter Johnny Logan singles in Bob Skinner for a 4-3 Bucs win. Elroy Face, the diminutive 5'8" 155-pound righty, who over his first eight seasons with the Pirates has saved 92 games and won 66, is the winning pitcher working five innings. Bobby Tiefenauer (1-4) lost after starter Bob Bruce was removed in the eighth. Roman Mejias hit his 10th home run driving in two of the Colt.45s runs giving him 24 for the year - both numbers lead the club. Willie Mays and Orlando Cepeda are tied for the league lead with 13 homers each and Cepeda leads the league with 44 RBI.
May 26, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Jim Golden (3-1) pitches his third complete game in four starts while shutting out Pittsburgh 2-0. Golden allowed no walks and gave up only three hits, facing the minimum three batters in each of six innings and retiring the final 13 batters in order. In his last two games his earned run average has dropped from 2.53 to 1.80. The .45s scored both of their runs in the third off loser Bob Friend on a walk, a hit batter and singles by Norm Larker and Hal Smith.
May 27, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
On a steamy Sunday afternoon with the game temperature standing at 88 degrees 32-year old Vern Law, in his eleventh season with the Pirates, goes the distance and knocks off the Colts 7-2. Ken Johnson (2-6) retired the first ten Bucs before falling victim to four errors, five unearned runs in the middle innings and a five-run deficit. Prior to that disastrous point Houston had led 2-0. Hal Smith picked up two of the club’s eight hits with Norm Larker and Jim Pendleton driving the two runs. The game ended a 4-3 home stand before 11,793 leaving the Colts with a 17-27 record, in seventh place and 14 and-a-half games out of first.
May 28, 1962 - Cincinnati, Crosley Field
Reds pitcher Joey Jay wins his second complete game over Houston winning 9-6 despite allowing 11 hits, five of them coming in the ninth inning when the .45s five-run rally fell three runs short. Cincinnati had built a six run lead off starter Turk Farrell (4-4) and reliever John Anderson in the first three innings, the two allowing nine hits, among them a home run by Don Zimmer (off Farrell). During the early thrashing by the Reds Jay had two hits prior to his two-run home run off Bobby Tiefenauer. Roman Mejias’ home run in the rally-short ninth was a three run blast to cap his day following a single and double.
May 29, 1962 - OPEN DATE
May 30, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field
It was a long and windy afternoon as two “so-so” clubs battled through 14 innings, losing all thoughts of where they were in the standings and each eager for a victory. In the end the Colt .45s prevailed 8-6 as a walk to Roman Mejias, a stolen base and Carl Warwick’s double gave Houston enough to win. The starting pitchers, Dean Stone and Cal Koonce, both were history by 2:30 p.m., and a total of seven more twirlers would see action before Dave Giusti (1-3) and Barney Schultz (3-2) went into the won-lost columns. The game had been tied at 6-6 following Mejias home run in the seventh inning, complementing a two-run shot hit Joey Amaliftano in the third, his first homer of the year. Houston had only two hits for the next six innings and Chicago managed only one. Giusti had entered the game in the sixth and pitched the final nine innings - three hits, two walks, four strike outs and two runners left on base. It was a brilliant outing by the 22-year-old rookie after losing his first three starts and being sent to the bull pen. It gave Giusti, signed as a free agent out of Syracuse University a year ago, the opportunity to finally call his family in Mattydale, New York with the news he had won his first major league game.
May 31, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field
A total of five home runs are hit on this windy afternoon but the big blast comes in the ninth by Jim Pendleton with two men on base. It gives the Colt .45s a 10-6 come from behind win and a sweep of the two-game series. Down to Chicago 6-5 going into the final inning Merritt Ranew opens the rally with a pinch hit and Chicago pitchers walk two batters to load the bases for Carl Warwick. He drives in what proves to be the winning runs and moments later Pendleton provides the coup de grace. Neither starter, Dick Ellsworth nor Bob Bruce, are around at the finish with Don McMahon (1-1) the winner and Don Elston (2-2) the loser. Hal Smith accounted for Houston’s other homer while Ken Hubbs, Ron Santo and Lou Brock homered for the Cubs.
June 1, 1962 - Pittsburgh, Forbes Field
The Pirates run rough-shod over five Houston pitchers and post an 8-4 victory. Pittsburgh built an early lead off Jim Golden (3-2) and reliever John Anderson and led 7-1 after four innings. The .45s hit Bucs pitching early with 12 hits but manager Danny Murtaugh called on his bullpen ace Elroy Face for the final three innings. Roberto Clemente and Smokey Burgess caused most of the Colts pain accounting for six of the Pirates hits. Houston pitchers had held Clemente hitless in his first ten trips in their meetings last week but today was a different story - he went three-for-four including a double and home run. For the .45s, Roman Mejias, Norm Larker and Hal Smith each had two hits.
June 2, 1962 - Pittsburgh, Forbes Field
Despite allowing ten hits Vern Law pitches his second win over Houston in six days 9-2. It was the Pirates seventh win in a row on a hitters day but not a fielders day – the two teams totaled 22 hits and committed six errors. .45s starter Dick Farrell (4-5) was lifted after four innings, giving up four runs in the first inning, three of those coming on Roberto Clemente’s home run. Dick Stuart also homered later off John Anderson. Al Spangler ripped off three hits including a double and his first home run of the year while Roman Mejias went 2-for-5 to raise his average to and even .300. This was Pittsburgh’s 15th victory in 21 games at Forbes Field.
June 3, 1962 - Pittsburgh, Forbes Field
The Colt .45s put on a dazzling display of offense as they smash the Pirates with a total of 31 hits and sweep both ends of a doubleheader 10-6 and 10-3. The double win gives the club a 4-3 record on the completed seven game road trip. The Pirates jumped on starter Dave Giusti in the opener for five runs in the first four innings, four of the runs coming on a three-run homer by Bucs starting pitcher Harvey Haddix and the other on a solo home run by Smokey Burgess. Roman Mejias tied the game in the seventh with his 13th home run and the Colts scored four more runs in the eighth, never trailing Pittsburgh throughout the remainder of the twin bill. Bobby Tiefenauer (2-4) chalked up the win.
The .45s wasted no time in the nightcap by scoring seven runs in the first inning and moving on to their sweep 10-3. Ken Johnson (3-6) loved the security of the big lead and coasted to his third complete game allowing seven hits while striking out five. Bob Skinner accounted for one of the runs for the Pirates with a home run. Mejias hit safely in both games upping his consecutive streak to 10 games and raising his average to .311. He hit safely in his final four at-bats in the opener and tripled in the first inning of the second game. Carl Warwick went 6-for-10 and pushed his average to a club leading .313. 24,282 sat through a long, warm and frustrating afternoon at Forbes Field as Houston stopped the Pirates seven game winning streak.
The Colt.45s return to Houston following the twin-win still in seventh place, 16 games out of first with a record of 22-29.
June 4, 1962 - OPEN DATE
June 5, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Bob Bruce (3-1) knocks off Milwaukee 7-1 for the second time this season while pitching his first complete game. Bruce struck out ten Braves cutting down each batter in the lineup at least once except for Eddie Mathews. Houston hit safely 13 times off Milwaukee pitching running their consecutive game string of double-digit hitting to six. Al Spangler led off the Houston offense with a first inning home run and the club went on to score two runs in each of the first three innings. Seven different players for the Colts drove in one run each with Spangler getting two on his homer and single. Both Roman Mejias (11) and Carl Warwick (10) hit safely to continue their consecutive game hitting streaks.
June 6, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Braves led all the way in this one as the 35-year-old Lew Burdette (3-4) wins it 6-3 while giving up 12 hits. It’s the 7th straight game Houston has been in double figures in hits, however the won-lost record over that period is only 4-3. Jim Golden (3-3) pitched seven innings allowing seven hits and four runs while Bobby Tiefenauer finished, giving up the final two runs. This was Golden’s second defeat by the Braves. Henry Aaron doubled, tripled and drove in two of Milwaukee’s runs with Del Crandall also contributing two RBI. Joey Amalfitano tripled in two of the Colt runs and Roman Mejias hit his 14th home run in the 8th to complete the scoring. Both Mejias and Carl Warwick extended their hitting streaks to 12 and 11 respectively.
June 7, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Dick Farrell and Warren Spahn hook up in a dandy as Houston comes from behind in the ninth to win 3-2. With the Braves leading 2-1 entering the bottom of the ninth, Spahn, who had given up only five hits, immediately runs into trouble when Jim Pendleton opens with a base hit. After retiring Roman Mejias on a foul fly to left fielder Gus Bell Norm Larker keeps things alive with another hit and Al Spangler enters as a pinch runner. Spahn eased things a bit for the Braves picking up the second out by retiring Carl Warwick on a fly to right fielder Mack Jones. Merritt Ranew then quickly singles in Pendleton with the tying run, and with Bob Aspromonte on deck Manager Birdie Tebbetts elects to lift Spahn (6-6). Tebbetts replaces him with rookie righthander Hank Fischer. Harry Craft counters with Billy Goodman to pinch hit for Aspro and Goodman drives in Spangler with the winning run. Don McMahon (2-1) is the winning pitcher. Mejias hit his 15th home run and singled off Spahn to extend his hitting streak to 13 games. Carl Warwick stayed alive right behind with 12 straight.
June 8, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Tied since the eighth inning at 2-2 on Frank Howard’s home run, Los Angeles pushes over the winning run in typical Dodgers fashion in the 13th on a walk to Maury Wills, a steal of second, a steal of third and a sacrifice fly by Willie Davis for a 4-3 victory over the Colt .45s. Sandy Koufax and Ken Johnson were the starters with Johnson pitching through the ninth and giving way to Don McMahon (2-2). With one out in the sixth LA manager Walter Alston lifts Koufax and brings in Ed Roebuck. Koufax had given up only two hits but was taken out following his third base on balls to Norm Larker. Roebuck, facing Carl Warwick gave up another walk then a single to Merritt Ranew to put Houston out in front 3-2. Warwick finished the evening 0-for-6 snapping his 12-game hitting string, but Roman Mejias singled off Koufax in the fourth to keep his streak alive at 14 games.
June 9, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Bob Bruce (4-1) goes the distance in an easy 13-1 victory over Los Angeles. Tommie Davis’ club leading 12th home run in the second inning is the only marker off Bruce in his seven-hit, four strikeout and three walk performance. Aside from the eighth when pinch hitters Daryl Spencer and Lee Walls opened the inning with singles, Bruce had a breeze through the afternoon. Meanwhile, Bruce was backed up by three two-run homers by Roman Mejias (16th), Carl Warwick (4th) and Bob Aspromonte (4th) in a 13 hit attack off three Dodgers pitchers, Stan Williams (6-2), Ed Roebuck and Phil Ortega. All three of LA’s pitchers worked in the fifth inning when Houston scored eight runs with both Mejias’ and Aspros’ home runs coming in the inning. Mejias’ homer kept his hitting streak alive at 15 games. All ten players for the Colts drove in at least one run, except for Bob Lillis who singled twice, walked and reached on an error. Bruce got into the RBI act driving in his third run of the year and Pidge Browne (batting for Lillis) also drove in his third of the season.
June 10, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Los Angeles sweeps a doubleheader from Houston 9-3 and 9-7 on a Sunday afternoon played under partly cloudy skies on the hottest day so far this year. Dodgers pitcher Don Drysdale obviously undaunted by the searing heat pitches a complete game six-hitter in the opener while six Colt.45s pitchers struggle through the two-hour and forty-five minute affair. LA jumped on starter Jim Golden (3-4) early and aside from Dean Stone, who walked the only two batters he faced, all pitchers were responsible for the Dodger hit carnage that totaled 17. Houston was never in the game following a two-run home run by Bob Aspromonte in the second as Los Angeles exploded for seven runs in the next three innings.
The total crowd of 33,221 (30,127 paid) had begun to dwindle in the late stages of the first game because of the heat. The temperature at game time (1:30) was 90 degrees with the humidity at 75% and the light warm breeze of 8-miles per hour blowing in from the Gulf added little or no relief to the fans. With no protection from the sun in the roofless stadium many fans were beginning to feel the effects of the heat, either already falling victim to the oppressive torture or just leaving the park.
In the second game Houston behind the pitching of Hal Woodeshick (2-4) and his relief George Witt had given the Dodgers a 9-1 lead going into the bottom of the sixth. Even a grand slam by Don Buddin that inning hardly gave the Colt.45s much prospect of eventually pulling close enough to challenge as they dropped the nightcap 9-7. It was a rough day for the ball club in all facets as Roman Mejias, who went 1-for-4 in the opener was held hitless in five at-bats in the second game and his 16-game hitting streak was stopped by Joe Moeller and Ron Perranoski.
Following the game it was estimated 75 to 80 fans had been overcome in various degrees by the heat. With the only shade available within blocks of the stadium – back and under the grandstand - many fans took refuge there where the most seriously affected were being cared for by medics.
June 11, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Dick Farrell (4-6) and lefty Al Jackson (3-7) hook up in a good pitching dual with New York and Jackson winning 3-1. The game was scoreless until the fifth when the Mets put together a walk, a triple by Sammy Taylor and Jim Hickman’s single for a 2-0 lead. Doubles by Norm Larker and Merritt Ranew scored Houston’s only run in the bottom of the inning. A base on balls and Charlie Neal’s single accounted for the final run of the game in the sixth. Farrell gave New York only six hits while striking out nine Mets and walking four. The .45s picked up seven hits off Jackson but fell victim to three New York double plays.
June 12, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston down 2-1 entering the bottom of the ninth rallies for the winning runs and a 3-2 victory over New York. Ken Johnson (4-6) worked his fourth complete game with a five hitter and nine strike outs. The Colts took an early lead in the second inning on a walk, an error and Bob Lillis’ base hit. The Mets came back to tie in the sixth and added two more in the seventh to take the lead. With one out in the ninth manager Harry Craft calls on two pinch hitters, Billy Goodman batted for Lillis and Pidge Browne hit for Johnson – both produced for a 2-2 tie – Goodman singled and Browne tripled. Roman Mejias, sitting out his second straight game, was sent in to run for Browne and Manager Casey Stengel called for an intentional pass to Al Spangler. Joey Amalfitano ended the game with his second hit of the evening this one off Craig Anderson (3-6) and the first off starter Bob Miller.
June 13, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium - POSTPONED
June 14, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston’s Bob Bruce tosses his fifth win against only one defeat going the distance in a 10-2 victory over the Mets. New York starter Jay Hook (4-7) failed to retire a batter as the Colt .45s tally seven runs in the first inning. In that frame the Colts pick up six hits among them a two-run home run by Carl Warwick. Bruce struck out seven batters and walked eight – never allowing more than one walk an inning until the ninth when he walked the bases loaded after two were out. Now he was facing Marv Throneberry, who in his previous four plate appearances had homered, walked, singled and singled again accounting for three of the six hits off Bruce. The 6-3 righthander has the pleasure of getting the final putout of the game when Throneberry grounds to Norm Larker.
The .45s finish their home stand with six-wins and four-losses moving their record to 26-34 for the season. The club is currently in seventh place 14 and-a-half games out of first.
June 15, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
Jim Golden (4-4) catches up with Los Angeles and does it in grand style with a five-hit 2-0 shutout working against Don Drysdale (10-4). Golden had been ripped by the Dodgers on June 10th when he was Ko'd in the third inning. In tonight’s performance he walked no one and from the third inning to the sixth retired 10 in row and allowed only two hits from that point on. The Colt .45s scored in the first on lead off singles by Al Spangler and Joey Amalfitano and a base hit by Norm Larker, then tallied their other marker in the 8th on a triple by Bob Lillis and an infield grounder by Golden - the play at the plate was too late to catch Lillis. It was an especially gratifying win for Golden following his purchase from Los Angles in the expansion draft.
June 16, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
Dick Farrell (5-6) pitches the .45s to a 4-1 win over Los Angeles before 45,146 fans at Dodger Stadium. The 6’4” righthander didn’t walk a batter while allowing LA only three hits. After giving up a two-out single to Willie Davis in the first inning Turk retired the next 13 batters in order before Willie got to Farrell again with a three base hit to open the seventh. Farrell faced only 30 Dodgers in his fourth complete game. Houston scored an unearned run off starter Johnny Podres (3-6) in the fourth inning on an error by Maury Wills and a double by Carl Warwick. In the sixth inning Jim Pendleton doubled and Norm Larker singled him in. The Colts scored their final two runs in the seventh off Ed Roebuck who hit a batter and walked another before Ron Perranoski entered and gave up a pinch single to Al Spangler.
June 17, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
Ken Johnson (4-7) and his relief Dean Stone are roughed up for 12 hits and the Dodgers go on to a 6-2 win over the .45s. Bob Aspromonte’s solo home run and base hits by Al Spangler and Joey Amalfitano gave Houston an early 2-0 lead in the third inning but that would be the extent of the club’s scoring. Bob Lillis picked up two singles among the four hits off starter Joe Moeller. Ed Roebuck (4-0) relieved Moeller and was the winning pitcher despite giving up three hits and two walks when the Dodgers batted around to score five runs in the sixth. The big blow in the inning was a three-run homer off Johnson by Tommy Davis as he added to his club leadership in both home runs (12) and RBI(68).
June 18, 1962 - OPEN DATE
June 19, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park
The .45s knock out Billy O’Dell (7-6) after 2.1 innings with seven hits and three runs then move on to a 6-4 victory over the Giants. Jim Pendleton’s double and a run-scoring single by Hal Smith was followed by a two-base hit by Bob Aspromonte and a single by Bob Lillis. Don Larsen allowed two runs in the 6th when Aspromonte and Lillis each picked up their second hits and Lillis’ third run batted in. Joey Amalfitano doubled and Roman Mejias, making his first start since June 10th, hung up his 43rd RBI with a sacrifice fly. Hal Smith concluded the scoring with a home run in the seventh.
June 20, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park
Houston gets rolling early against Juan Marichal and continues against Bob Miller (3-2) to score a 9-5 win over San Francisco. Roman Mejias conks Marichal with his 17th homer in the first inning and in the third Norm Larker unloads a three-run blast off the Giants ace. San Francisco came back to tie 5-5 after six innings off starter Bob Bruce and Dean Stone (3-2). However, in the top of the 7th the Colts wrap it up with three runs on four walks off Miller (two intentional) a single by Joey Amalfitano and a two-run pinch double by Pidge Browne. Amalfitano came up with his second hit a triple and scored on a passed ball by Tom Haller. Stone, who has struggled since almost the beginning of the season racked up the win working 5.1 innings allowing three runs (two of them on a homer by Haller) three walks and five strikeouts. A note here on the defense - Hal Smith committed a throwing error in the sixth on an attempted steal of third - the .45s had played 31 innings without a boot.
June 21, 1962 - OPEN DATE
June 22, 1962 - New York, Polo Grounds
Al Jackson pitches the Mets to a stunning one-hitter to beat the Colt .45s 2-0 in the first game of a doubleheader and the Colts come back to take the nightcap 16-3. In the opener with one out in the first inning, the native of Waco now making his home in Houston, gives up his only hit of the game to Joey Amalfitano - a single. After striking out Roman Mejias, Jackson (4-8) walks Norm Larker before Carl Warwick strikes out to end the inning. The next 22 batters to face Jackson are retired in order - no Colt .45 would reach base until Pidge Browne draws a lead off walk as a pinch hitter in the ninth. Ironically, Dick Farrell’s (5-7) loss is his second to Jackson (3-1 June 11) in that game both pitchers also went the distance. This game had we known at the time was over after Mets lead off hitter Ritchie Ashburn homered in the first inning. Farrell allowed only two hits after Ashburn’s home run and the second run off Farrell was scored in the seventh on a walk to Ashburn and a base hit by Felix Mantilla.
The second game could be likened to the story, “The girl I left behind.” Houston after losing a one-hitter used the hits they left behind in the opener and clobbered New York 16-3 banging out 17 hits. The Colt.45s smashed four home runs off four Mets pitchers with starter Bob Miller (0-5) and Vinegar Bend Mizell taking the brunt of the onslaught. Eight different Colts drove in a least one run with Merritt Ranew topping the list with three RBI - one a two-run home run. Others taking advantage of the Polo Grounds foul poles 279 in left and 257 in right were Roman Mejias (#18), Carl Warwick and Jim Pendleton. Jim Golden (5-4) worked a complete game seven hitter with seven strike outs, but was more proud of his hitting - going 3-for-5 including a measly single, two triples and two runs batted in.
June 23, 1962 - New York, Polo Grounds
Starter Ken Johnson (4-8) and his relief Dean Stone are blasted early by the Mets allowing a total of 11 runs and 12 hits in the first five innings and New York goes on to a 13-2 win. Johnson gives up seven runs and six hits in 2.1 innings and Stone working 2.2 innings allows four runs and six hits. Ritchie Ashburn homered off each pitcher with Joe Christopher socking a solo homer off Stone. Working with that big lead Mets starter Jay Hook (5-8) sailed through all nine innings with an 8-hitter. Al Spangler opened the game with a home run and Carl Warwick, Merritt Ranew and Bob Aspromonte strung together three singles for the other Houston run in the sixth.
Following the game the Colt .45s announce the trade of Dean Stone to the White Sox for righthand relief pitcher 38-year-old Russ Kemmerer. He brings a 2-1 record from Chicago with an earned run average of 3.86. Kemmerer is a seven-year veteran of the American League, previously playing for the Red Sox and Washington with a lifetime record of 38-56 and an ERA of 4.46. Because of roster restraints Kemmerer will not immediately be activated. Stone leaves the Colts with a 3-2 mark after opening the season with two shutouts over the Cubs. He was moved to the bullpen on May 16 with little success and finished with an ERA of 4.47 making seven starts and five relief appearances.
The club also announced the signing of 20-year old All-American college shortstop Ernie Fazio out of Santa Clara. The 5-7 165 pound right hand hitting infielder will join the club immediately.
June 24, 1962 - New York, Polo Grounds
Both games of today’s doubleheader are postponed following a long rain delay with one out in the bottom of the third inning of the opener with the score tied at 3-3. Bob Bruce and Roger Craig had started with Bruce KO'd in the first. Norm Larker hit a three-run homer in the top of the 3rd to tie the game. However, none of the records are official and the game will be replayed in its entirety.
June 25, 1962 - Philadelphia, Connie Mack Stadium
The Phillies snap a 3-3 tie in the bottom of the ninth to win their fifth straight game from the .45s 4-3. Starter Hal Woodeshick (2-5) was taken out after a lead single by Bobby Wine to open the ninth and was relieved by Don McMahon. Philadelphia pitcher Dallas Green (2-2) laid down a sacrifice and Tony Taylor drove in the winning run with a double. All three of Houston’s runs came in the fourth inning when Phils starter Cal McLish served up Roman Mejias’ 19th home run putting him only two behind Willie Mays who has a league leading 21. Norm Larker singled and Carl Warwick doubled to score Larker and Bob Aspromonte singled in Warwick to account for the Colts' third run.
June 26, 1962 - Philadelphia, Connie Mack Stadium
Philadelphia scores two runs off Dick Farrell (5-8) in the second inning and the lead holds up as Phillies rookie pitcher Jack Hamilton (5-5) shuts out the Colt.45s 2-0 in the first game of a doubleheader. The Phils go on to sweep the twin bill by winning the nightcap 6-4. In the opener while Hamilton was pitching a two-hitter Farrell gave up only three hits and strangely all five hits in the game came in the first two innings. Hamilton gave up singles to Roman Mejias in the first and to Carl Warwick in the second while all three hits off Farrell come on a double by Clay Dahlrymple and an RBI base hit by Don Demeter. Joe Torre added the third hit and Demeter scored later on a Farrell wild pitch.
Between games Houston announced some roster changes. Russ Kemmerer recently acquired from the White Sox for Dean Stone is activated along with pitcher Dick Drott. Drott a righthander had been at Oklahoma City of the American Association since the start of the season after being drafted from the Cubs in the 1961 expansion draft for $75,000. He was 3-1 with the Colts Triple-A 89ers with an ERA of 4.50. At the same time John Anderson who came to the .45s with Carl Warwick on May 6th in exchange for Bobby Shantz was sold back to the Cardinals organization and was sent to Rochester (International League).
The Colt .45s broke a 21-inning scoreless streak in the second game scoring two runs in the eighth after Philadelphia had piled up a 6-0 lead but the Phillies go on to a 6-4 sweep. The double loss ran Houston’s winless string against the Phils to seven in a row. Jim Golden (5-5) suffered the loss giving up five runs and six hits in 3.1 innings. Art Mahaffey (9-8) was the winner going the distance with a seven-hitter - five of which came in the 8th and 9th innings. A single by Carl Warwick and pinch hits by Jim Pendleton (triple) and Billy Goodman (double) produced two runs in the eighth and Warwick hit a two-run homer in the ninth after a base hit by Hal Smith. On their eleven game road trip the club won five and lost six dropping them into 8th place 16 games out of first.
June 27, 1962 - OPEN DATE
On this off day before opening a home stand with Cincinnati and Pittsburgh the Colts announce the purchase of Of/1B Bob Cerv from the Yankees. The 6-0, 200 pound Cerv is 36 years old and is in his 12th major league season, nine of which he has spent with New York. Four years with Kansas City and a partial season with the Dodgers round out his ML tenure. Cerv has seen little action with the Bronx Bombers this season (batting .118 2-for-17) but manager Harry Craft has indicated he will start the veteran in left field in the first game of the home stand with the Reds.
June 28, 1962 - OPEN DATE
June 29, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
On an evening with the humidity at game time a high for the season at 97% Cincinnati’s Jim O’Toole (6-9) spins a four-hit shutout against the Colt .45s 4-0. Roman Mejias picks up three of the four hits, one a double, as he raises his average to .303. The only other hit by Houston is a single by Bob Aspromonte. Starter Ken Johnson (4-9) lasts six innings allowing eight hits, all four of the Reds runs, one walk a hit batter with six strike outs. Frank Robinson drives in two of Cincinnati’s runs with Eddie Kasko and Jerry Lynch batting in one each. Bob Cerv makes his debut with the Colts in left field and goes 0-for-3 committing the only error of the game.
June 30, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The .45s score six runs in the third inning off Reds starter Jim Maloney (2-3) and go on to a 7-3 victory over Cincinnati in a game called at the end of the top of the 7th because of fog. Bob Bruce (6-1) picks up the win with his fourth complete game. Houston sent eleven batters to the plate in the 3rd with five hits and runs batted in by Mejias (#48), Carl Warwick, Bob Aspromonte, Bruce and two by Al Spangler. Warwick drove in the seventh run in the sixth inning. The .45s had ten hits in the shortened game with everyone hitting safely except Don Buddin. Reds manager Freddie Hutchinson goes ballistic when umpire Jocko Conlon calls the game without the necessary delay stating to Hutchinson it was “an act of God”. Hutchinson announced he was protesting the game. The early finish allowed .45s manager Harry Craft to head immediately to the hospital and be on hand to be with his wife Nellie as she gives birth to daughter Carol Anne who weighed in at six pounds one ounce.
July 1, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Cincinnati pitcher Joey Jay (11-7) throws his third straight victory over the .45s 6-1. He goes the distance for the ninth time this season and stymies Houston to one run on a nine hitter. That one run comes on a single by Bob Aspromonte and a pinch hit by Bob Cerv. With Cerv on first Al Spangler lines a hit to right field that eludes Frank Robinson - then the fun began - Cerv, slow-footed as he is, lumbers around third in an attempt to score. He doesn’t make it. He is thrown out Robinson, to first baseman Gordy Coleman to catcher John Edwards amid the laughter and futile urging of the Colts dugout for that extra run. Spangler was wrongly given a triple by the official scorer - under scoring rules it should have been scored a double - but it remains a triple today in not only Al’s eyes (who missed the fun on his way to third) but in the official stats. Cerv’s gamble didn’t pay off but if you gambled and played poker on the attendance you won if you had 6,666.
July 2, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Pittsburgh rallys for three runs in the seventh inning off Hal Woodeshick (2-6) to win the opening game of the four-game series 4-2. The Colts had led 2-0 since the second when they scored twice off Bucs starter Bob Friend (8-8) on a double by Joey Amalfitano, singles by Roman Mejias and a sacrifice fly by Carl Warwick. Bob Skinner drove in the tying and winning runs with a pinch hit single and Dick Stuart hit his 11th home run in the ninth to help seal the Pirates win. Mejias and Bob Aspromonte each picked up three singles as Mejias raised his club leading batting average to .311.
July 3, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Pirates Harvey Haddix (7-3) holds the .45s to five hits as the Bucs rattle Ken Johnson (4-10) with his fourth straight loss with ten singles and a double for a 5-2 victory before 10,729 fans. The Colts had back-to-back home runs by Jim Pendleton and Bob Aspromonte in the second inning but could garner only three hits the rest of the way against Haddix and his relief Roy Face. Recent free agent signing Ernie Fazio made his major league debut on defense replacing Bobby Lillis who was lifted for a pinch hitter in the 8th. Fazio had no chances at shortstop in Pittsburgh’s ninth.
July 4, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
A holiday crowd of 20,005 watched as Pittsburgh supplied the fireworks knocking off the Colt.45s in both ends of their twilight night doubleheader 7-0 and 4-3. The Pirates Vern Law (7-3) threw the eight-hit shutout in the opener stranding nine with Roman Mejias the only one with more than one hit - the right fielder went 3-for-4 off Law all singles. Bob Bruce (6-2) gave up four quick hits to the Bucs in the first inning that led to three runs. Before he was lifted after 3.1 innings the .45s were behind 6-0. Newcomer Ernie Fazio made his first plate appearance as a pinch hitter in the seventh and popped to first.
The Pirates won the second game 4-3 behind Earl Francis (5-5) and Elroy Face. Francis allowed only one of the runs while striking out eight and the Colts tallied two runs off Face in ninth. Jim Golden (5-7) was the loser with recently acquired Russ Kemmerer relieving Golden for his first appearance since joining the club from the White Sox. Ernie Fazio had his first starting assignment leading off and playing shortstop. He was hitless in three at bats with a base on balls. Houston concluded their home stand with only one win and six losses bringing the teams’ overall record to 33-46, a win percentage of .417 and the deepest they have been out of first place all season - 20 and-a-half games.
July 5, 1962 - OPEN DATE
July 6, 1962 - Cincinnati, Crosley Field
Houston finally beats Joey Jay (11-8) after he had won his first three games for the Reds against the .45s, but it took a shutout by Hal Woodeshick (3-6) to come up with the 2-0 victory. Woodeshick threw an eight-hitter, did not walk a man and struck out eight to win his first game since April 24. The only two runs in the game came in the second inning on singles by Norm Larker and Carl Warwick, a sacrifice fly my Merritt Ranew and Bob Lillis’ base hit. Jay struck out five in the first two innings and at one point sat down 11 in a row facing only 25 batters in his seven innings.
July 7, 1962 - Cincinnati, Crosley Field
The Reds jump all over four Houston pitchers with 15 hits and 10-1 victory behind the pitching of Bob Purkey (14-2). The only run he allowed was in the ninth inning when Ernie Fazio picked up his first major league hit and run batted in. Colt starter Ken Johnson (4-11) was knocked out with one away in the second after allowing four runs on three hits (one a home run by Vada Pinson) and two bases on balls. Frank Robinson extended his hitting streak to eleven games with four hits raising his average to .330. Purkey also chipped in with his second homer of the season coming off Russ Kemmerer.
July 8, 1962 - Crosley Field
Baseball fans who enjoy plenty of hits and home runs came to the right place today to watch the .45s and Reds battle it out in a Sunday afternoon doubleheader. A total of 46 hits and 13 homeruns spiced up the day as 18,332 post-holiday fans saw Cincinnati win both games 12-8 and 12-11 in 13-innings. The Reds took the opener with a six-run blow-out in the sixth inning off starter Bob Bruce and Dick Farrell (5-9). Bruce’s, exit came on Frank Robinson’s grand slam in an inning that saw ten batters parade to the plate to accumulate five hits, two walks, a wild pitch, a stolen base and a Houston error. Jim Maloney (4-3) who entered the game in the sixth was the winner after starter Jim O’Toole and Mo Drabowsky issued two two-run round trippers to Norm Larker and Carl Warwick and a solo shot to Hal Smith. Each club hit three home runs with the Reds picking up 13 hits and the Colts 11.
The nightcap was won in the bottom of the 13th after Houston had gone out in front in the top of the inning 11-10. The game had been tied at 10-10 since the 8th. They did it on Norm Larker’s single, Carl Warwick’s sacrifice and Merritt Ranew's base hit. However, Marty Keough led off in the bottom of the 13th with a tying home run and Cincinnati went on to win on Frank Robinson’s single, a sacrifice and a single by Leo Cardenas. Fourteen pitchers were used in the game, nine by the Reds and five by Colts. This second game produced four .45s home runs - two by Bob Cerv, one by Larker and one by Bob Aspromonte. Cincinnati had 22 hits, Houston 17.
July 9, 1962 - FIRST ALL-STAR BREAK
July 10, 1962 - Washington, D.C., D.C. Stadium
Dick Farrell is the only representative from the Colt.45s on the National League team. It is the second time he has been selected as an All-Star - the first time as a member of Phillies in 1958. The National League beats the American 3-1. The other All-Star game this season will be player at Wrigley Field in Chicago on July 30th.
July 11, 1962 - Philadelphia, Connie Mack Stadium
Houston and Philadelphia use this open date to make up one of the two games postponed in Philly on April 15th - their regular schedule will resume in Pittsburgh tomorrow.
The Phillies score early and the Colts pick up their only run in the ninth inning as Philadelphia wins its eighth straight against Houston 6-1. Art Mahaffey (11-9) is responsible for three of those wins as he throws a five-hitter for his 11th complete game of the year. Hal Woodeschick (3-7) gives up a three-run home run in the first inning to Roy Sievers and Dick Drott, making his first appearance since being brought up from Oklahoma City, tosses up a two-run shot to Ted Savage in the fifth. Only 3,441 show up for this makeup game and they didn’t stay long as it was played in one hour and 55 minutes.
Following the game coach/C/OF Jim Busby was optioned to Oklahoma City.
July 12, 1962 - Pittsburgh, Forbes Field
The Pirates get to starter Jim Golden (5-8) early and Houston never recovers as the Bucs rack up a 6-4 win in the first of a three-game series. Dick Stuart jumped on Golden in the first inning with a two-run homer his 13th and his third off the Colts. Then in the 3rd he gave up a three-run shot to Smokey Burgess. Golden was relieved for Russ Kemmerer in the fifth and he was greeted by a solo home run by Bob Skinner. Pirates starter Al McBean (9-5) coasted with a 6-1 lead until the seventh when the .45s scored three runs on five singles (Bob Aspromonte, Carl Warwick, Hal Smith, Al Spangler and Billy Goodman) aided by a throwing error by shortstop Dick Groat. Pirates manager Danny Murtaugh allowed McBean, a second-year pitcher, to stay the distance for a complete game. Both Spangler and Roberto Clemente came up with three hits, one a triple by Clemente and a double by Spangler. Clemente was coming off a three hit performance in Tuesday’s National League All-Star win.
July 13, 1962 - Pittsburgh, Forbes Field
For the sixth straight game the Colt.45s fall behind at the start as Houston’s starting pitching continues to falter – this time leading to a 4-0 loss. The big culprit is Bob Friend (9-9) who stops the Colts with seven hits and no walks while the .45s are hitting into five double plays. Dick Farrell (5-11) gives up two runs in the first on a Bill Virdon double, a single by Bob Skinner and Roberto Clemente’s 51st RBI. In the 3rd Farrell starts with a double to Dick Groat, another base hit by Skinner and a double steal of home by Groat and Skinner’s steal of second - his second steal of the game. This is Houston’s sixth straight defeat and the 10th to Pittsburgh in 13 games. The Bucs are having a feast on the lower three clubs with a 26-7 record against the 8-9-10 teams in the standings – Colts 3-10, Cubs 3-9 and Mets 1-8.
July 14, 1962 - Pittsburgh, Forbes Field
The final game of the series is one of those Saturday morning games that is scheduled for an 11:30 a.m. start. Following a night game it is not a favorite time for players or the media. (Pittsburgh baseball is still being played under Pennsylvania Blue Laws – the game must be concluded by 5 p.m. – thus the early start). A very sparse crowd of about 200 is on hand for the beginning with the humidity at 88% on a sun-splashed morning.
There seems to be something about Pennsylvania teams that causes Houston to roll over. Vern Law (8-4) chalks up his fourth victory over the .45s leading to their seventh loss in a row 4-2. In this series the Pirates have thrown three complete games – Al McBean, Bob Friend and Law. Today the Colts managed to get out in front for a change with a game-opening single by Joey Amalfitano, the first of three hits he would garner for this morning’s and afternoon’s affair. Roman Mejias followed with his 20th home run, and that accounted for the club’s scoring for the day. From that point on the Bucs chipped away off the pitching of Bob Bruce (6-3). One of their four runs was Bob Skinner’s third home run off Houston pitching, running Pittsburgh’s total off the Colts staff to 11 for the season. Bruce is battered for 10 hits in his 4.1 innings. After beating Cincinnati in the opening game of the road trip the .45s have dropped their final seven and head home with a record of 33-53 – still in 8th place thanks to the Cubs and Mets – but still 25 games from the top of the league. Earlier I mentioned Pennsylvania teams – so far this season it stands Pennsylvania 19 – Texas 3.
July 15, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Colt .45s come behind in the seventh inning to win the first game of their doubleheader with Chicago 5-4 on three home runs. The Cubs gained a split by taking the second game 4-1. In the opener Hal Woodeshick (4-7) allowed six hits and four runs in his first five innings but none over the next two frames before being lifted. The top of the Cubs batting order, Lou Brock and Ken Hubbs, account for all of Chicago’s runs and five of their six hits. Down 3-4 after six innings on Roman Mejias' 21st homer in the first inning and a two-run home run by Carl Warwick in the 4th, both coming off loser Bob Buhl (6-7), Houston wins it after two outs in the 7th on a pinch walk to Bob Cerv and Al Spangler’s home run. Don McMahon pitched a perfect 8th and 9th for the save.
The Cubs take the second game 4-1 as starting pitcher Dick Ellsworth (5-13) pitches a five-hitter with Houston scoring its only run in the first. The run was unearned as result of errors by third baseman Jim McKnight and leftfielder Billy Williams. After the first inning the Chicago lefty allowed only three hits. Colts manager Harry Craft used six pitchers in an effort to control what turned out to be a 10-hit Cubs attack with starter Ken Johnson (4-12) working only two innings giving up three runs and five hits. This Sunday afternoon doubleheader is the first played in Colt Stadium since June 10 when some 75-80 fans were overcome by heat. Today the attendance was 6,907 despite a temperature of 94 with the humidity at 58%.
July 16, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium vs. Chicago - POSTPONED
July 17, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Russ Kemmerer (0-1) gets his first start for the .45s, pitches well for six innings but falls victim to the Phillies 3-0 in the opener of a doubleheader. It was the same old story – another loss in the second game 8-2 as Houston falls once again to Philadelphia for the ninth and tenth times without a win. Jack Hamilton (6-7) and Jack Baldschun hold the Colts to five hits in the first game with Hamilton retiring the first eight men in order to open the game and giving up only four hits in his seven innings. Kemmerer went six innings allowing two runs, one a home run to John Callison, on six hits with five strike outs. After two outs in the first Kemmerer retired 11 consecutive Phillies before giving up his second run in the 6th.
Jim Campbell who had been catching for Oklahoma City since the start of the season joined the club as Kemmerer’s catcher – this was his first big league appearance after playing eight years in the minors. At Oklahoma City he was hitting .350 in 70 games with 47 RBI, nine homers, 12 doubles and three triples. In his debut today he lined to left and lined to second on what turned out to be a double play when Bob Aspromonte was doubled off second. In his final at bat he drew a base on balls.
Dick Farrell (5-12) got off to a great start but faltered in the middle innings and lost for the third time to his former team 8-2. He was taken out after five innings, charged with five runs on seven hits – one a home run by Tony Gonzalez. Bobby Tiefenauer pitched two innings and Jim Umbricht finished up. Umbricht worked in both games with a two-game total of five innings, four runs, six hits, four strike out and one walk. The Colts only two markers came in the 4th off starter Cal McLish (6-2) on a single by Roman Mejias and Bob Aspromonte’s ninth home run.
July 18, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The .45s drop their eleventh consecutive game to Philadelphia without a win as Dallas Green (3-2) throws a six-hit complete game. The Phillies wasted little time in this one moving to a 6-2 victory by blasting starter Bob Bruce (6-4) out of the game with one out and five runs in the first inning. It was Bruce’s poorest beginning of the season - along with three hits he hit a batter and walked one. Jim Campbell had a passed ball and Bob Aspromonte committed an error to allow two unearned runs. Houston scored their two runs in the 3rd on a single by Jim Golden, who had relieved Bruce in the opening inning, a base on balls to Roman Mejias and a two-run double by Norm Larker.
July 19, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston and Philadelphia battle to a 2-2 tie through seven innings before the Phillies knockout Hal Woodeshick (4-8) in the 8th and go on to a 6-2 win . Chris Short (5-6) is credited with the win after starter Paul Brown is lifted by Manager Gene Mauch after the Colts pick up two hits but fail to score in the seventh. One of the hits snapped a 15 at-bat hitless streak by Joey Amalfitano. The first four batters in the order for the .45s (Al Spangler, Billy Goodman, Roman Mejias and Norm Larker} go hitless and score their only two runs in the second on a walk to Larker, back-to-back singles by Bob Aspromonte and Jim Pendleton, a throwing error by the Phils right fielder John Callison and a single by Woodeshick. After 12 losses without a win against the Phils the only bright spot is that the Colts are not scheduled to face them again until August 20.
July 20, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Trailing 2-3 going into the bottom of the ninth inning Houston comes up with the winning runs to take the first game of the series from St.Louis 4-3. Trailing most of the game Bob Aspromonte hits his 10th home run in the 8th off relief pitcher Lindy McDaniel, who had just entered the game in the seventh. That brought the .45s within catching distance and Billy Goodman’s pinch single starts the winning rally in the ninth. Pidge Browne, also pinch hitting, draws a walk and pinch runners Jim Golden and Jim Pendleton are moved over on Joey Amalfitano’s sacrifice bunt. Cardinals manager Johnny Keane orders an intentional walk to Al Spangler and Roman Mejias promptly ends the game with a base hit driving in runs number 56 and 57. Dick Farrell (6-12) pitches the distance giving up seven hits without a walk and strikes out 12. After Farrell allowed two runs in the opening inning on Stan Musial’s double, following singles by Curt Flood and Julian Javier, Turk, after one out in the 2nd, retires the next 14 Red Birds before allowing another hit to Musial, giving Stan the Man 13 hits in his last 22 at-bats.
After the game the Colts announce the sale of Don Buddin to Detroit for an unannounced amount of cash. Buddin leaves the .45s with a .162 average, two homers and 10 RBI in 40 games.
July 21, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Russ Kemmerer (0-2) makes his second start another unsuccessful one as the Colts are shutout by Larry Jackson (9-8) 7-0 in the opener of a day-nite doubleheader. Houston rebounds in the second game with a 7-3 win for the split. The Cardinals strike Kemmerer for three runs in the second inning of the first game on two home runs, a solo by Ken Boyer and Carl Sawatski’s with a man on. Kemmerer went only 2.2 innings giving up seven hits while Jim Umbricht pitched 5.1 and was pounded for four runs and eight hits. While the Red Birds were piling up 16 hits Jackson was holding the .45s to four. From two outs in the third through one out in the 8th Jackson retired 14 consecutive batters to rack up their fifth win seven games against Houston.
Curt Simmons (8-6) was no puzzle for the Colts in the evening game as he was touched up for all seven runs in his five innings on ten Houston hits. Hal Smith drove in four runs two each in the 2nd and 6th innings on doubles while Jim Pendleton had two singles and two RBI. Bob Aspromonte drove in the other Houston run while chalking up a double and single. Ken Johnson (5-12) worked only 5.2 innings allowing all three St.Louis runs and five hits. He was lifted in the top of the sixth when Ken Boyer homered to draw the Cardinals within one run of a tie. However, Simmons was knocked out in the bottom of the inning upping the .45s lead to 7-3 and awarding Johnson the win. Jim Golden pitched the final 3.1 for the save retiring the last eight in a row. Bobby Shantz worked the last two innings for the Red Birds in his first appearance against the Colts since his trade to St.Louis on May 7 for Carl Warwick. The little lefthander gave up a single to Golden, walked Smith and Roman Mejias while striking out Norm Larker and Warwick. The Saturday afternoon game drew only 4,580 (90 degrees) but the two-game total was 22,322 with an attendance of 17,742 (87 degrees – humidity 72%) for the night half.
July 22, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Bob Gibson (13-6) wins his third game in as many starts over the .45s chalking up another win for St. Louis 3-1. Manager Johnny Keane surprisingly lifted Gibson with two outs and Hal Smith on third in the ninth and brings in Lindy McDaniel who gets pinch batter Billy Goodman to ground out to end the game. Gibson had allowed only seven hits but walked four and had he finished it would have been his 11th complete game in 20 starts. Houston’s only run came in the first on a walk to Joey Amalfitano and singles by Roman Mejias and Norm Larker. Al Spangler had three hits off Gibson but was stranded each time. The Cardinals scored all three of their runs in the second off Bob Bruce (6-5) when he gave up four of his seven hits – one a single and RBI by Gibson who entered the game with a batting average of .280. This was another Sunday afternoon game and 8,685 showed up to test the sun on a partly cloudy day with a temperature of 92.
July 23, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Willie Mays leads the Giants with his 29th home run and his 88th and 89th runs batted in to a 5-1 victory over Houston before 12,086 fans. Meanwhile, Bob Bolin 6-0) pitches a seven hitter and the only run he allows is unearned. That error on Joey Amalfitano is the first committed by the .45s in 38 innings. Starter Hal Woodeshick (4-9) loses his 3rd game to San Francisco pitching three innings and is lifted behind 4-1. Five of San Francisco’s ten hits come from the bats of Mays (home run-double) and Orlando Cepeda (two doubles and a single). The Giants win evened the season series at five wins each.
July 24, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
It was a tight pitchers battle but Jack Sanford (13-6) won out over Dick Farrell (6-13) as San Francisco beats the .45s 3-1. Willie Mays hit two solo homers off Turk in the first and fourth innings and the Giants added their final run in the sixth when (not surprisingly) Farrell decked Mays and Orlando Cepeda singled him home. When Mays batted again in the 8th Farrell struck him out swinging. Turk was taken out for pinch hitter Billy Goodman in the seventh and Goodman drove in Hal Smith for Houston’s only run. Farrell allowed seven hits, walked one and struck out six. Of course, he hit one batter and also threw a wild pitch. Mays upped his homer total to 31 and RBI tally to 91 and Sanford who threw a five hitter won his sixth in a row working 6.2 innings before Don Larsen relieved and struck out four of last seven batters he faced.
July 25, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Colts lose again to San Francisco in an almost carbon copy of last night’s defeat 3-2. However, the starting pitching wasn’t as good as yesterdays’. Jim Golden (5-9) was knocked out by the third inning after a rough start. He gave the Giants seven hits and two runs in his 2.1 innings – one a home run with the bases empty to Jim Davenport in the first – then stranded five batters who had picked up base hits during his short tenure on the mound. Starter Billy O’Dell (12-8) gave up three hits in the first, a lead off double by Joey Amalfitano who scored when number two hitter Jim Pendleton singled him home. The other run scored in the eighth on Bob Aspromonte’s 11th home run coming off Stu Miller.
Tomorrow is an off day and over the weekend the club will play in Chicago – then break for the second All-Star game then move into Milwaukee and St.Louis before returning on August 6. This was another bad home stand 3-10 running the season’s home record to 20-34 and dropping the .45s into 9th place for the first time this season. The club is currently 36-64 through their first 100 games and 31 games out of first place.
July 26, 1962 - OPEN DATE
July 27, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field
Hal Woodeshick (4-10) is victimized early allowing nine hits and four runs – one run in each of his first four innings – before being relieved with two outs in the fourth in the Cubs 5-1 win. Dick Ellsworth (6-14) pitched the distance working a 10-hitter with Carl Warwick’s 10th home run in the 2nd Houston’s only tally. Warwick would later add two singles in the fourth and ninth but Ellsworth kept his hits well scattered. Chicago had a total of 11 hits but only two off the .45s bullpen as Jim Umbricht, Bobby Tiefenauer and Russ Kemmerer who worked the final 4.1 innings.
July 28, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field – POSTPONED BY RAIN. TWO GAMES TOMORROW
July 29, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field
The weather is threatening and cool with a strong 10 MPH wind blowing in from left field as Houston and Chicago open their Sunday afternoon doubleheader with the Cubs taking the opener 4-2 behind starter Cal Koonce (9-3) and Don Cardwell. Bob Bruce had retired the first seven batters before Chicago scored in the 3rd on a walk, a base hit by Koonce and an error on left fielder Al Spangler. George Altman opened the fourth with his 14th home run and this would be the final inning for Bruce who had allowed only two runs (one unearned) and only three hits. The .45s get to Koonce in the top of the 5th on a lead single by Carl Warwick and a double by Jim Campbell then with one out manager Harry Craft lifts Bruce for pinch hitter Pidge Browne. With a light rain beginning and the forecast for weather trouble all afternoon Craft obviously was hoping for at least a tie before the game became official. Browne flies to shallow right for the second out but not deep enough to score Warwick. However, Bob Lillis singles to score both Warwick and Campbell to tie at 2-2. Lillis then steals second and moves to third on Spangler’s infield hit. Now, Craft, looking for the lead run, calls for a double steal. With Spangler breaking for second, infielder Ken Hubbs cuts off catcher Cuno Baragan’s throw in front of second and Hubbs’ return throw to Baraqan nails Lillis at the plate to retire the side. Chicago goes on to score the winning runs off Jim Golden (5-10) in the sixth inning on two walks Billy Williams RBI single and a sac fly by Baragan.
A light rain is still falling but the umpires elect to at least get the second game started and the Colts gain a split with a 3-1 win. Houston took a 1-0 lead in the 3rd on J.C. Hartman’s base hit, a sacrifice and a single by Spangler. Meanwhile, Ken Johnson was shutting out the Cubs with five hits going into the sixth. He opens that inning by giving up two hits but Chicago fails to score. Never the less Craft makes a pitching change to start the 7th and brings in Dick Farrell (7-13). Turk starts the inning by striking out Ernie Banks but Billy Williams hits his 19th home run to tie the game at 1-1. In the top of the eighth the .45s win it with a two-run rally started with a walk to Spangler, a sacrifice bunt, an intentional walk, a run scoring sacrifice fly by Warwick, an error on Banks and a single by Hal Smith to score the other run.
July 30, 1962 - Second All-Star game at Wrigley Field – American League win 9-4.
July 31, 1962 - OPEN DATE
August 1, 1962 - Milwaukee, County Stadium
The veteran Bob Shaw (12-8) throws his 11th complete game holding the .45s to eight hits in Milwaukee’s 3-0 victory. Only three Houston runners reached second base as Shaw struck out seven with only one base on balls. The only Colts hitting highlight of the game was second baseman Bob Lillis going 2-for-4 and picking up his 11th hit in his last 21 at bats (.523) to raise his average during the run from .205 to .230. Hal Woodeshick (4-11) lost everything in the third inning after two outs when he allowed two runs on three walks and two hits. The final Braves run came on Joe Adcock’s 19th homer off Jim Umbricht in the 5th. Outfielder Ron Davis called up from Durham (Carolina) made his first major league start in center field. He singled, struck out twice and flied out. Davis, 6-0 180, was signed as a free agent out of Duke University in 1961 and played last season at Jacksonville,(Sally). He was hitting .295 at Durham at the time of his promotion with eight homers and 42 RBI.
August 2, 1962 - Milwaukee, County Stadium
For all intents and purposes this game ended in the top of the first inning when Houston scored three runs and Dick Farrell (8-13) shutout the Braves 3-0. Milwaukee starter Lew Burdette (8-7) retired only one batter of the six he faced in the opening inning giving up singles to Bob Lillis and Al Spangler, an intentional walk to Norm Larker and base hits by Bob Aspromonte and Jim Campbell. Tony Cloninger, Don Nottebart and Carleton Willey held the Colts scoreless the rest of the way with only three hits. Farrell pitched a no-walk five hitter and struck 11 for his 3rd win over the Braves without a defeat.
August 3, 1962 - St.Louis, Sportsman’s Park
Houston finally catches up a bit on Bob Gibson (13-8) as the Colts win the opener of a four game series with St.Louis 8-3. With three wins over the .45s behind him the ace of the Cardinals staff is hammered for five runs and nine hits in his 3.1 innings. In the first a barrage of four straight hits to open the game by Bob Lillis, Al Spangler, Carl Warwick and Norm Larker and three runs sealed Gibson’s doom, and three more hits by Warwick one a two-run home run (#11) got Gibson out of the game in the 4th. Ken Johnson (6-12) with a five-run lead going into the seventh gives up a two-run homer to Charlie James that leads to his exit after working 6.1 innings having allowed nine of the Red Birds 13 hits. Johnson also gave up a third inning home run to Curt Flood. Everyone who went to the plate had at least one hit in the Colts 15-hit attack except Don McMahon who pitched the final two innings. Included was George Brunet who relieved Johnson in the 7th inning after being called up from Oklahoma City yesterday. It was an interesting debut for the lefthander who had been purchased on May 18 from Milwaukee, he came to bat to lead off the eighth and singled in his first Houston plate appearance, but back on the mound faced only two pinch hitters, Bobby Gene Smith and Gene Oliver both of whom singled bringing on McMahon.
August 4, 1962 - St.Louis, Sportsman’s Park
Ray Washburn (10-5) has his no-hitter broken up after one out in the seventh on a single by Carl Warwick, but goes on to a 4-hit 2-0 victory over the .45s. Washburn walked Joey Amalfitano with one out in the first inning then retired 18 Houston batters in order before Warwick came up with the spoiler. Bob Bruce (6-6) had allowed only two hits until giving up the two runs that beat him in the fourth when he hit Charlie James with a pitch and Gene Oliver doubled him home, Oliver then scored on a single by Dal Maxvill. Don Taussig, called up from Oklahoma City along with George Brunet opened the game in left field and struck out and grounded out in his two at-bats. Taussig was drafted in the National League player pool last season from St.Louis for $75,000 after spending time with San Francisco in 1958 and the Cardinals in 1961.
August 5, 1962 - St.Louis, Sportsman’s Park
Houston rolls for seven runs in the last two innings in a tremendous come from behind 7-4 win over St.Louis in the first of a Sunday doubleheader. Ironically, the Red Birds bounce back to take the second game, also by 7-4. The .45s were down 3-0 in the opener going into the eighth but kod Cardinals pitcher Larry Jackson with two runs, then followed that in the ninth by racking reliever Lindy McDaniel (2-6) for the final five runs with the go-ahead marker driven in by Bob Lillis’ for his fourth hit of the game. The afternoon got off to a ghastly beginning in George Brunet’s initial start for Houston. The 27-year old lefty retired only one batter in the first, that coming on a sacrifice bunt, while giving up three runs, two hits and three bases on balls. Yesterday in relief Brunet gave up singles to the only two batters he faced. Jim Umbricht allowed only one hit in his 3.2 innings in relief of Brunet and Russ Kemmerer (1-2) pitched four scoreless innings with Don McMahon working the ninth. Lillis had his eight game hitting streak stopped yesterday by Ray Washburn but his 4-for-5 today upped his average to .435 over the last ten games (17-for-39). It was a 4-5 road trip which brought the clubs’ record to 40-69, in eighth place 34 games out of first.
August 6, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
8,507 fans “welcomed” the .45s home on a clear 87 degree evening and what they saw was three hours and 29 minutes of great pitching that ended in 13 innings with a Cincinnati victory. Dick Farrell worked the first 12 innings before being lifted for a pinch hitter after allowing only six hits and striking out nine. Only two batters had reached second off Turk before he was relieved by Don McMahon (2-3). Bob Purkey went the first ten innings giving up only seven hits before Johnny Klippstein (4-2) took over in the 11th. The game was still tied 0-0 with two outs in the top of the 13th when Klippstein made his first trip to the plate and promptly deposited a McMahon pitch 390 feet into the left field pavilion. This was the first National League 1-0 game won on a pitcher’s home run since July 26, 1879 when Harry McCormick of Syracuse hit one in the first inning off Boston’s Tommy Bond.
August 7, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Colt .45s fall victim to Joey Jay’s (17-9) pitching for the fourth time in five games as the Reds win 3-0, and at the same time run their consecutive scoreless innings to 25. One of the previous wins by Jay was also a shutout 5-0 when he pitched a six-hitter here in Colt Stadium on May 24. Tonight he gave up only four hits with no walks and six strike outs. Colts starter Ken Johnson (6-13) pitched the first five innings and got behind on Gordy Coleman’s two-run home run in the 4th his 23rd and another round tripper in the eighth off Jim Golden when Frank Robinson connected for his 22nd and his 91st run batted in.
August 8, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Still looking for that elusive item known as a “run” the .45s are mesmerized for the third game in a row as Joe Nuxhall (2-0) and Jim Brosnan shut down Houston on six hits 4-0. Nuxhall pitched 7.1 innings leaving with five strike outs and all of the Colts six hits. Brosnan retired the final five batters to preserve the shutout and run Houston’s scoreless inning string to 34. Bob Bruce (6-7) went the first five innings giving up two runs and five hits – one a home run by Jerry Lynch for the 16th homer by the Reds off Colts pitching and Cincinnati’s tenth win 13 games.
August 9, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
After shutting out the Colts in the first three games of their series, the Reds complete the sweep of the four-game set with a 7-3 win. It’s Houston’s fifth straight loss but they did manage to break their scoreless string of 38.2 innings by scoring two runs in the fifth, one on an error and the other on a fielders choice. Those runs were set up on base hits by Norm Larker and Joey Amalfitano. The club missed tying the National League record of 45 innings set by Cincinnati in 1931. This was another bad start by Hal Woodeshick (4-13) who was taken out when he walked the first two batters in the second. Two of the runs off Woody were scored in the first on a single, a double and Wally Post’s triple. A base hit off Jim Umbricht gave the Reds a 3-0 lead after two frames and a home run by Frank Robinson and two more hits off Umbricht extended the lead to 5-0 after three. Manager Harry Craft used five pitchers with Bobby Tiefenauer and Russ Kemmerer each working two innings of scoreless ball, but Jim Golden allowed two in the 9th - one unearned. Jim O’Toole (12-12) went all the way for the Reds giving up seven hits while striking out eight in beating the .45s for the third time without a loss.
August 10, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Colt .45s continue to be bugged by negative statistics as they lose to Milwaukee 7-6 for their sixth straight loss. For the second game in a row manager Harry Craft sends five pitchers to the mound with George Brunet (0-1) making his second start and again failing to make it through the first inning. He was lifted after two outs giving up three runs and five hits. Bobby Tiefenauer took almost as much punishment in 4.1 innings – three runs and four bases on balls including a homer by Joe Adcock – with Hal Woodeshick, Russ Kemmerer and Jim Golden rounding out the overworked bull pen. The Colts who yesterday had snapped a long scoring drought hit their first home run since August 3rd (a period of seven games and 76.2 innings) when Roman Mejias hit a two-run homer to knock Warren Spahn (12-11) out of the game. It was Mejias first home run since July 15th during a period in which he picked up only four RBI.
August 11, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Dick Farrell (8-14) and Bob Shaw (14-8) put on a decent pitchers battle but in the end the Braves win 3-1 sending the Colts to their seventh consecutive loss – tying their previous high. Turk gave up nine hits but struck out only two batters indicating he was a shade off with his fast ball. He gave up one home run to Joe Adcock. It was Farrell’s first loss to the Braves after three wins and Shaw picked up his third victory in as many starts against Houston.
The club announced prior to the game they had purchased the contract of long-time Cincinnati second baseman Johnny Temple for an undisclosed amount of cash from Baltimore where he was hitting .263 in 79 games. He will join the team on Tuesday.
August 12, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The Colts snap their seven game losing streak on a blistering Sunday afternoon knocking off Milwaukee 8-5. Game time temperature was 105 but a humidity of 35% may have tended somewhat to “cool” things in the minds of the 4.902 in attendance. A total of eight pitchers sweated through the two hour and forty-minute game as the two teams rattled off a total of 25 hits. 35-year old Lew Burdette (9-8) was the first to go after pitching only 3.2 innings, probably dreaming of a cool shower as he departed in the fourth inning. Burdette gave up a home run to Norm Larker, singles to Bob Aspromonte, Hal Smith and J.C. Hartman and a knockout double by Bob Lillis to account for the fourth run off the veteran. Bob Bruce (7-7) lasted through 5.1 innings giving up five hits and two runs. Jim Golden gave up three runs and four hits in 2.2 innings including a home run to rookie Amado Samuel and Don McMahon and Russ Kemmerer finished. Two Colts continued their hot hitting - each with a three-hit game – Lillis is now eight for his last 13 and Aspro eight for his last eleven.
August 13, 1962 - OPEN DATE
August 14, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston wins a hotly contested pitchers battle scoring the winning run in the 10th inning 4-3. Tied 2-2 going into the 8th the Cardinals score the go-ahead run on Charlie James’ pinch hit off Ken Johnson. In the bottom of the inning Roman Mejias singles, moves to third on a base hit by Norm Larker and scores on a grounder by Bob Aspromonte to re-tie. St.Louis lost a go-ahead opportunity in the top of the 10th when Julian Javier, who had singled off reliever Don McMahon (3-3). was thrown out at second with two away. Gibson (14-9) had rolled up ten strike outs, but walked eight and the Cardinals defense (three errors-one by Gibson) would lead to their downfall. The Colts scored two runs in the fourth on two hits and two errors and the Red Birds lost the game in the tenth on two more passes by Gibson and an error on Javier. Johnson in eight innings topped Gibson in strike outs with 12, getting Curt Flood four times and Gibson three. Gibson did hit a home run off Johnson but in the end it was Gibson’s second loss to Houston after three victories.
August 15, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston wins another good pitchers’ battle with a 3-1 victory over the Cardinals. Neither Hal Woodeshick (5-13) or Ray Washburn (10-6) finished, but Woody worked until one out in the ninth when he allowed the Red Birds their only run with Russ Kemmerer relieving. In his 8.1 innings Woodeshick allowed eight hits with the one run coming on 9th inning singles by Bill White, Minnie Minoso and a pinch hit single by Julio Gotay. Kemmerer ended the game by forcing pinch hitter Red Schoendienst to hit into a double play. Stan Musial, batting .339, but in a 1-for-20 slump, was given a rest by manager Johnny Keane. Hal Smith and Carl Warwick (#12) hit solo home runs off Washburn and Roman Mejias drove in his 62nd run for the final marker.
August 16, 1962 - Colt Stadium
On a cloudy and windy night with the temperature at 78, a wind at 10 MPH, the humidity at 99% and a crowd of 9,159 the Cardinals take the final game of the series 3-1. No runs were scored until the sixth when Houston picked up a tally on a double by Al Spangler and an error. St.Louis came back in the 7th to tie and gained their winning margin with two runs in the eighth. Dick Farrell (8-15) worked 7.1 innings allowing only three runs on four hits but his control was off and he walked five. Larry Jackson (10-10) went all the way for the Red Birds with a five-hitter. Spangler had two doubles, walked and was hit by a pitch to push his average to .300.
August 17, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The .45s come from behind with two runs in the ninth and win the opening game of their series with Chicago 3-2. The Cubs had scored single runs in the first and fourth innings off Bob Bruce and Houston cut the two-run led to 1-2 on Jim Pendleton’s sixth inning home run off Dick Ellsworth. Ellsworth gave up his eighth hit to Roman Mejias to open the ninth and was quickly lifted for Bob Anderson (2-6) a righthander to face Bob Aspromonte. Aspro fouled up the right-left strategy by the Cubs and singled for his first hit in 14 at bats moving Mejias to third. The Cubs make another pitching change and bring in Barney Schultz, but to Chicago’s chagrin Schultz unloads a wild pitch and Mejias scores the tying run. With one out following pinch hitter Norm Larker’s fly to center and Aspromonte on third Schultz issues intentional walks to pinch hitters Al Spangler and Billy Goodman. Hal Smith becomes the fourth straight pinch hitter called upon by Harry Craft and Smith singles in Aspromonte for the winning run. Russ Kemmerer (2-2) faces only six batters in the final two innings. Bruce had been lifted for pinch hitter Johnny Temple in the 7th and Temple flied to left in his first Houston appearance.
August 18, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston scores two runs in the first and it holds up for a 2-1 win for the .45s in the first game of a Saturday night doubleheader against the Cubs. Chicago rallies in the late innings of the night-cap to gain a split with a 6-5 victory.
The Colts George Brunet (1-1) does a complete 180 degree turn around from his first two starts – he had failed to finish the first inning in both – pitching a three-hitter with seven strike outs. After retiring the first nine Bruins he gave up his only run in the sixth on a walk to his pitching rival Cal Koonce (9-6), a single to Don Landrum and a two base error on Al Heist scoring Koonce. The Colts tallied their runs in the opening inning on a single by Al Spangler, a base on balls to Roman Mejias and a two-run double by Norm Larker.
In the second game Houston had a 5-3 lead going into the 8th scoring two runs in the first off Glen Hobbie on Singles by Bob Lillis, Al Spangler and Norm Larker and a error on right fielder Don Landrum. Hobbie also gave up a solo home run to Hal Smith in the fourth and two more runs that knocked Hobbie out after he allowed two hits a single by Carl Warwick and a double by Norm Larker to open the fifth with RBI by Bob Aspromonte and Jim Pendleton. Ken Johnson had given up a home run to Ken Hubbs and allowed two more runs before being relieved after pitching 5.1 innings. Jim Golden couldn’t hold the lead as Lou Brock led off the eighth with a walk and scored on a triple by Landrum who followed with the tying run as Smith dropped the throw to the plate. Don McMahon (3-4) who relieved in the 8th gave up a lead-off triple in the ninth to catcher Cuno Baragan who scored the lead and winning run on a base hit by Lou Brock. Don Elston (4-7) who pitched the seventh and eight innings giving up three hits and two walks fell into the win and Don Cardwell worked the ninth for the save in Chicago’s 6-5 victory.
August 19, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Chicago wins the final game 4-3 to gain a split of their four-game series with the .45s – all four games were decided by one run. Hal Woodeshick (6-14) allowed only one run on three hits and two walks striking out five, but was called away for personal reasons after working only four innings (he will return to the team on Friday). Russ Kemmerer took his spot on the mound and allowed the other Cubs run in 2.2 innings. Bob Buhl (9-9) set down the first ten batters and the Colts didn’t get their first hit until two outs in the fifth then were held scoreless until they touched up Buhl for three hits and a run in the 7th. The club went 4-3 on the home stand running their season total to 45-78. The Colts remain in 9th place 35 and one-half games out of first place.
August 20, 1962 - Philadelphia, Connie Mack Stadium
Philadelphia overcomes the .45s for the 13th time in as many games this season in the opener of a three-game series 7-1. Houston was out hit by only one but stranded 12 runners as Dallas Green (6-5) pitched a complete game 11-hitter. A double by Norm Larker and a single by Roman Mejias in the third was all the Colts could muster off Green. Meanwhile, Dick Farrell (8-16) gave up eight hits and six runs (only three of which were earned due to five Houston errors) in five innings and his relief Bobby Tiefenauer allowed one run and four hits in two innings with Don McMahon finishing. Two of the earned runs off Turk came on back-to-back homers in his final inning by Wes Covington and Clay Dahlrymple. Tomorrow the two will tangle in a twi-nite doubleheader with only five more games remaining against the Phils.
August 21, 1962 - Philadelphia, Connie Mack Stadium
By now the Colt .45s are scratching their heads and wondering will it ever stop! There must be something in the wind as the Phillies continue their onslaught of the Colt .45s by sweeping this evening’s twi-night doubleheader 5-3 and 7-4. Houston has yet to win a single game against Gene Mauch’s club in 15 tries.
Philadelphia led from the start in the opener jumping on Bob Bruce (7-8) in the first inning for three runs on only one hit. Bruce loaded the bases before getting an out on two walks and a fielders choice and then hit Roy Sievers with a pitch to score one run and a double play scored another. Don Demeter singled in the third run and the Colts never caught up. Art Mahaffey (17-10) pitched his 18th complete game, a six-hitter as the .45s scored two in the third inning and one in the fifth. Johnny Temple made his first start since his purchase from Baltimore and went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Carl Warwick also had two hits, one a double, driving in the other two markers. Warwick led off and Temple hit second while the number 3,4,5 batters (Norm Larker, Bob Aspromonte, Roman Mejias) were 0-for-11.
In the second game rookie Jack Hamilton (7-11) went the distance for a 7-4 win despite giving up nine hits and four walks. Jim Golden (5-11) was greeted with solo home runs in the first inning by Johnny Callison and Roy Sievers and was knocked out in the fifth after retiring one batter. Golden was taken out after being charged with nine hits (four of those in the KO inning) and six runs. The Phils banged out six hits in the frame with Golden’s relief Bobby Tiefenauer giving up the other two. The .45s did come up with two home runs with Jim Campbell hitting his first major league round tripper and the other an insignificant homer with a man in the ninth by Carl Warwick. It was the 13th for Warwick as he had four hits and seven total bases for the evening’s work. The Colts leave Philadelphia for the season with an 0-9 mark with two games remaining in Houston. The .45s move onto Pittsburgh with a record with the other Pennsylvania team of 3-11.
August 22, 1962 - Pittsburgh, Forbes Field
It took only two hours for the Pirates to knock off the .45s behind the pitching of veteran Tom Sturdivant’s (6-3) 3-hitter 3-0. It was Houston’s sixth straight defeat and the 12th to Pittsburgh. George Brunet (1-2) also had a strong outing but the Bucs scored all three of their runs in the third inning on two singles, a triple by Bob Skinner and Roberto Clemente’s sacrifice fly. Brunet pitched seven innings before being lifted for a pinch hitter in the eighth allowing seven hits while striking out nine. Sturdivant retired the first 12 Colt batters before issuing two walks, with Hal Smith coming through with the .45s first hit of the evening in the fifth. The other two hits were by Al Spangler a single in the sixth and Bob Lillis’ double in the ninth. Roman Mejias went hitless to run his string to 0-13 dropping his average under .300 for the first time since June 26.
August 23, 1962 - Pittsburgh, Forbes Field
Houston rolls over again suffering their third straight shutout as Vern Law (10-6) pitches a four hit 4-0 Pittsburgh win. This defeat equals the longest Colts losing streak of the year at seven. Law gave up one hit each in the first four innings with Norm Larker getting the fourth hit, however, Al Heist followed with a double play ball. After the third inning Law faced only 19 batters the rest of the night. He walked Johnny Temple in the sixth then retired the remaining ten in a row. Ken Johnson (6-14) pitched well as did George Brunet in yesterday’s shutout but Johnson was lifted for a pinch hitter in the eighth after giving up five hits, one a home run by Bill Virdon in the third. This is the final game in Pittsburgh this season with the Bucs winning seven of the nine. They have two more games remaining with the Pirates in Houston with the current Texas vs. Pennsylvania standing at 3-27. Just for the record, the .45s have now been mathematically eliminated from winning the 1962 National League pennant.
August 24, 1962 - Cincinnati, Crosley Field
The current losing streak for the .45s reaches eight – their longest of the season – as they drop the first of the four game series to the Reds 4-2. Bob Purkey (20-4) pitches the sixth straight complete game against Houston on this current road trip into Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati. The nine year veteran gave the Colts their only two runs in the second on a double by Bob Aspromonte and Hal Smith’s home run. The Redlegs bounced back in the third by knocking out Hal Woodeshick (5-15) as he gave up four runs, four hits, a walk and a wild pitch. Frank Robinson’s 116th run batted in was the blow that exited Woody to complete the evening’s scoring. The 3rd place Reds continued on a roll to win their 31st game in their last 37.
August 25, 1962 - Cincinnati, Crosley Field
The red hot Reds win their sixth straight and at the same time hang the ninth loss in a row on Houston 7-6. Joey Jay (20-10) although giving up 12 hits in his 7.2 innings survived through his final two frames when he was roughed up for four runs and five hits to become the second Cincinnati pitcher to chalk up his 20th win in the first two games of the series. Jim Brosnan saved it for Jay retiring the final four Colt batters. Houston never led as the Reds jumped out in front in the 4th against Dick Farrell (8-17). He was conked for four runs, a three-run homer by Marty Keough and a solo by Leo Cardenas. The two home runs off Farrell were the 17th and 18th he has allowed, however, 15 of those have come with the bases empty. Turk was lifted to open the fifth when he allowed two more hits to open the inning. The .45s out hit the Redlegs 12-9 with Hal Smith getting his 10th home run of the season with a runner on. Smith also had a double and a walk while Norm Larker, Carl Warwick and Billy Goodman also contributed two safeties. Interestingly, the Reds as a team are batting .270 and Houston .244.
August 26, 1962 - Cincinnati, Crosley Field
Houston snaps their nine game losing streak in grand style sweeping the Sunday afternoon twin bill from the Reds 2-1 and 6-4. They did it with what has been missing to win games – good pitching and timely hitting.
George Brunet (2-2) goes all the way in the opener pitching a five-hitter with six strike outs. He allowed the Reds their only run in the seventh on Wally Post’s 15th home run. The .45s gave Brunet all the runs he needed in the 4th a single by Norm Larker, a stolen base and Hal Smith’s fifth RBI of the series. A couple of walks off Jim Maloney (8-5) in the fifth opened the gates for another hit by Larker to sew up the win.
The .45s jump out in front early on Jim Campbell’s two run homer with two outs in the second inning of the second game and build the lead on another run off Jim O’Toole in fourth on Roman Mejias’ 63rd RBI. Cincinnati closed the gap to 3-2 in the bottom of the sixth with two runs off Hal Woodeshick but Campbell and Carl Warwick quickly put two hits together to up the lead to 4-2 in the seventh. In the bottom of the inning Woody is charged with two more runs to tie at 4-4. The Colts put together a grand conclusion to the afternoon in the ninth when facing the third Reds pitcher Ted Wills (0-2) who opens his tenure on the mound by hitting Al Heist with a pitch. However, Wills comes back to get a hard shot off Campbell’s bat to first baseman Gordy Coleman who starts a 3-6-3 double play to shortstop Cardenas. Bob Lillis and Jim Pendleton, batting for Don McMahon (4-4), start it all over again with back-to-back singles and a walk to Carl Warwick to load the bases - this prompts Freddie Hutchinson to make another pitching change - and Bill Henry is called out of the bull pen to face Johnny Temple who singles in his first two runs since joining the team from Baltimore. Jim Umbricht is Harry Craft’s choice to replace McMahon to hold the lead and Umbricht response by striking out Cardenas swinging and Eddie Kasko and Vada Pinson looking.
August 27, 1962 - OPEN DATE
August 28, 1962 - St.Louis, Sportsman’s Park
Houston snaps a 1-1 tie in the fifth inning and goes on to a 4-2 victory over St.Louis in the opener of a two game series. Bob Bruce (8-8) is taken out in the sixth inning after giving the Cardinals only five hits and two runs – both of which are unearned as the result of errors by Jim Campbell and J.C. Hartman. Carl Warwick the games’ first batter led off with his 14th home run and his 3rd against his ex-teammates, giving the .45s the lead that was upped to 4-2 before Bruce’s departure. In the 5th Roman Mejias, who had singled in the first inning, doubled to drive in his 64th and 65th runs after St.Louis starter Ernie Broglio (10-7) walked Al Spangler and Johnny Temple came up with a base hit. Bob Lillis then drove in the Colts fourth run with his second hit of the game. Don McMahon who took over for Bruce in the 6th worked a flawless 3.2 innings setting down all 11 batters while striking out five.
August 29, 1962 - St.Louis, Sportsman’s Park
Dick Farrell (9-17) outduels Bob Gibson (15-10) in the final meeting of the season between St.Louis and Houston 3-2. Both pitchers go the distance with the Cardinals out hitting the .45s eight to six, but the Colts come up with two solo home runs by Roman Mejias (#23) in the third and Jim Campbell’s shot in the 9th producing the winning run. Farrell put Houston in front in the second inning driving in his second run of season. Turk also bested Gibson tonight in strike outs 10 to 6 while walking only two. During the course of the season Gibson allowed five homers to .45s hitters, three of them by Carl Warwick. The two clubs finished play against each other in a dead heat each with nine wins.
August 30, 1962 - OPEN DATE
August 31, 1962 - OPEN DATE
September 1, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field
Chicago comes from behind on Ron Santo’s home run in the seventh as the Cubs eke out a 4-3 win over the .45s. The clubs were tied at 1-1 going into the seventh when Houston jumped on Dick Ellsworth (8-17) for two runs. A base hit by Jim Campbell started it followed by a walk to Bob Lillis, a sac bunt by pinch hitter Joey Amalfitano (batting for George Brunet) and Johnny Temple’s two run single giving the .45s a 3-2 lead. However, the Cubs come right back against Don McMahon (4-5) who had just entered as a replacement for Brunet. McMahon walked the lead batter Dick Bertell and Santo deposited his 16th homer onto Waveland Avenue for the winner. Brunet had given up single runs in the fourth (a double by Billy Williams and base hit by Andre Rodgers) and the other run in the sixth on hits by Ernie Banks and George Altman. Brunet had another solid outing following a few earlier horrendous appearances with the Colts and worked his ERA down to 3.30.
September 2, 1962 - Chicago, Wrigley Field
The Colt.45s down by one run all afternoon jump on Bob Buhl (10-10) for three hits and all their runs in the eighth to end their 13-game road trip with a 3-1 win over Chicago. The Cubs scored their only run (unearned) in the first off Ken Johnson who was lifted for a pinch hitter in the seventh inning after giving up five hits and striking out five. Houston’s three run outburst started on a single by Carl Warwick, his second hit, Buhl’s throwing error on Al Spangler’s ground ball to the mound that moved Warwick to third. Johnny Temple then squeezed Warwick home followed by Roman Mejias’ double that scored Spangler for the go ahead run. Bob Aspromonte, who had earlier singled to snap an 0-for-13 slump, adds a double scoring Mejias for the third marker. Don McMahon (5-5) pitches the final three innings allowing zero runs, two hits, a walk and two strike outs.
An added note on Chicago – Ken Hubbs broke the major league record in this his 74th consecutive game without an error – breaking Boston’s Bobby Doerr’s former record of 73 games set in 1948. Hubbs’ last error was on June 13 and he now has had 389 flawless chances. This is the final game of the season with Chicago and the .45s won the series 11-7. The Colts after losing their first seven games on this road trip finish with five wins and one loss in their final six games for a 5-8 trip. The team goes home with a season record of 50-86 and tomorrow night will play a doubleheader with the Phillies, leaving only three more chances to beat them for the first time - currently standing at 0-15. The team will arrive in Houston tonight on Delta Flight 7940 at 9:54 p.m.
September 3, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The bad continues for the .45s in their quest to beat Philadelphia at least once this season as they lose both ends of their homecoming doubleheader 3-2 and 5-3. Houston returned in an upbeat mode winning five of their final six games on the road after opening the tour with seven consecutive defeats. Dick Farrell (9-18), who has been pitching much better than his won-lost record indicates, held a 2-0 lead over the Phillies going into the eighth but a base on balls (the only walk Turk would allow) is followed by a game tying home run by Johnny Callison. The Colts had taken their lead scoring one run in the first inning on a double by Carl Warwick, two walks by Art Mahaffey (18-11) and a fielders choice grounder by Roman Mejias scoring Warwick. The club made it 2-0 in the 6th on a single by Norm Larker and Bob Aspromonte’s two base hit. From that point on Mahaffey retired the last 11 Houston batters while Farrell gave up a lead-off triple in the ninth to Tony Taylor and a single to Billy Klaus for what turned out to be the winning run. Mahaffey pitched a four-hitter while Farrell gave up only six hits in eight innings of work.
With 17,302 fans watching on this 88 degree evening their enthusiasm for beating the Phils waned early in the second game when Hal Woodeshick (5-16) allowed five hits and four runs in the first three innings paving the way for another .45s loss 5-3. Houston pecked away at Jack Hamilton (8-11) in the third inning on a pinch single by Jim Golden and two wild pitches then added another run in the 5th on J.C. Hartman’s base hit. Golden moved him up a notch when hit by a pitch and J.C. scored on Roman Mejias sacrifice fly. Hamilton was knocked out in the sixth when Jim Pendleton opened with a single and Jim Campbell and Bob Lillis followed with singles to load the bases off reliever Jack Baldschun. Johnny Temple’s pinch sac fly scored Pendleton with the Colts last gasp running the Phillies to their 17th win without a loss against the Colts.
September 4, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
In an effort to do everything within the realm of possibility to stop the season-long losing streak to the Phillies, the Colt .45s PR department invites fans to the final meeting and called it Voodoo night. The fans were asked to bring any item that might hex Philadelphia into a defeat. Suggestions varied from voodoo dolls with hat pins, rabbit’s feet, cow bells or other noise makers, witches and devils’ outfits. In other words use your imagination and come a necromancer – commit sorcery and magically influence the course of events and effect evil on the Phils.
Backed by the outstanding crowd reaction forced on them by the fans along with Bob Bruce’s (9-8) complete game four hitter with seven strike outs, as well as his two runs batted in and an additional two by Bob Lillis, the Colt .45s stick enough pins into Philadelphia to voodoo into a 4-1 victory. Three of those runs came in the second inning off Cal McLish (9-5) after two outs on Bob Aspromonte’s and Hal Smith’s singles and a triple by Lillis. Bruce followed with another hit in the 6th driving in his seventh run of the season. The only run off Bruce was a home run in the second inning by Don Demeter. The lower four batters in the Colts order supplied all four runs and all but two of the club’s nine hits. That wrapped up the year’s series with the Phillies and a painful record of 1-17. But this was an upbeat night with a small crowd of 4,537 that sounded like 40,000 helping to hassle the opponent into submission and prevent a season-long whitewash.
September 5, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
The .45s break a 3-3 tie in the seventh inning and move on to a 5-3 win over the Pirates. Starter George Brunet gave up all three of Pittsburgh’s runs in his 3.2 innings while allowing eight hits that pushed the Bucs to an early 3-0 lead. From that point on the Houston bull pen held the opposition to one hit the rest of the way. The Colts scored their first run in the 3rd off starter Vern Law (10-7) when he walked Al Spangler, a single by Johnny Temple and Norm Larker’s base hit that scored Spangler. Spangler would score again in the fifth following singles by Temple and Larker’s second RBI of the game. Temple scored the tying run on Jim Pendleton’s ground ball to short. While Russ Kemmerer, Jim Umbricht (1-0) and Don McMahon were setting down the Pirates, Houston tallied the winning runs in the seventh on a single by Carl Warwick, Spangler’s third base on balls of the game and back-to-back singles by Pendleton and Umbricht who entered the game in the fifth inning batting for Bob Aspromonte.
1B/OF Dave L. Roberts, who had been purchased by the Colts in April of 1961 from Dallas-Ft.Worth (American Association), made his first major league appearance after eleven minor league seasons. Entering the game as a fourth inning pinch hitter he lined out, grounded out and struck out giving him an 0-for-3 debut. Roberts played for Jacksonville (Sally) and the Buffs in 1961 and was called up from Oklahoma City after hitting .322 with 15 home runs and 96 runs batted in.
September 6, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
For the second straight game Houston scores late and knocks off Pittsburgh 4-3 as the two clubs close out their season series. This one was a good pitcher’s battle between Ken Johnson and Tom Sturdivant but neither finished with a decision. Each went eight innings with Sturdivant holding the .45s to five hits and Johnson yielding nine while striking out the same number. Johnson got behind early allowing two runs in the second inning on two hits, a walk, a hit batter and both runs were singled in by Sturdivant. The Colts cut the lead to one in the fourth inning when Johnny Temple drew a lead-off walk, Norm Larker was hit by a pitch and Bob Aspromonte singled in the run. Following a lead-off homer by Don Clendenon off Johnson in the eighth that upped the Bucs lead to 3-1 the .45s won it in the bottom of the ninth. Temple doubled to open the inning and after Sturdivant walked Larker the Pittsburgh starter was replaced by Elroy Face. Jim Pendleton singled to load the bases and Aspromonte’s sacrifice fly scored Temple cutting Pittsburgh’s lead to one run. Face retired Hal Smith on a fly to right for the second out and Dave L. Roberts was sent up to pinch hit for J.C. Hartman. Roberts responded with his first major league hit – a double and a winner for Houston. Russ Kemmerer (3-2) had pitched the top of the ninth after Johnson was lifted for a pinch hitter and was the winning pitcher with the loss going to Face.
This was only the fifth win for the Colts over Pittsburgh this season against 13 losses and it also winds up the season’s Texas vs. Pennsylvania battle for 1962. The final for the two-states’ series was (Philadelphia-Pittsburgh) Pennsylvania 30 – Texas 6.
September 7, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston opens a four game series with a 4-2 win over New York on the wings of outstanding starting and relief pitching. Hal Woodeshick started the game by retiring the first nine Mets he faced before allowing only two hits and two runs through six innings, but an unearned run and two wild pitches in the 6th put New York out in front 2-1. The Colts bounced back in the bottom of the inning on a double by Johnny Temple and a run batted in single by Al Heist to knot the game at 2-2. Woody issued back-to-back base hits to open the seventh and was lifted for Jim Golden (6-11) who retired the next three Mets. Al Jackson (8-18) walked J.C. Hartman to open the bottom of the inning and Golden bunted him over. Temple then singled after two outs with pinch runner Joey Amalfitano stealing second and Jim Pendleton sewed it up with a base hit to put the .45s over the top. Golden got himself into a jam to open the eighth by walking Richie Ashburn and Don McMahon wild pitched him into scoring position but settled down and retired the next six New York batters in order – three of them on strikes.
September 8, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
On a steamy 85 degree afternoon with the humidity at 77% the Colt.45s win the day-half of their day-night doubleheader from the Mets 4-3. The Colts get behind in the first inning on two unearned runs on errors by J.C. Hartman and starting pitcher George Brunet, but Brunet pitches through seven innings giving up no further runs and only three hits before he’s lifted for a pinch hitter while trailing 2-0. Mets starter Jay Hook is lifted to start the seventh after shutting out the Colts for his six innings and allowing five hits. Manager Casey Stengel sends in rookie Ray Daviault and this is the turning point of the game. Daviault has two infield errors behind him as well a hit by Al Spangler in his first inning of work as Houston cuts the lead to 2-1. Hal Smith opens the 8th inning batting for Jim Campbell and ties the game with the first Houston home run in the last nine games. Russ Kemmerer (4-2) working his second inning in relief of Brunet gives the lead back to New York in the ninth on a triple by Joe Christopher and a base hit by Rod Kanehl. With the Mets now leading 3-2 Stengel lifts Daviault to start the 9th and brings in another rookie Willard Hunter who promptly gives up singles to pinch hitter Bob Lillis and Johnny Temple. Out goes Hunter and number 37 lumbers to the mound and brings in Craig Anderson (3-17). Anderson forces Joey Amalfitano to hit into a double play but Norm Larker is walked on purpose and scores the winning run on a combination of Bob Aspromonte’s single that eludes Frank Thomas in left field for New York’s fifth boot of the game.
Only 1,638 showed up for the partly cloudy afternoon game but under the lights with the temperature “cooled” to 83 and the humidity up to 82% 6,568 gather for the night game. The evening was a hitters delight with a total of 25 hits and a 10th inning win for the Colts 6-5. Oddly, the two starting pitchers gave up all 25 hits with Dick Farrell allowing 13 and Roger Craig (7-23) giving up 12. Only four of the 25 hits went for extra bases including Farrell’s second home run of the season. After retiring the first seven in order Farrell was kicked around for four runs and four hits in the third inning and the.45s didn’t catch up until the eighth with a 5-5 tie. Farrell came out for a pinch hitter with two outs in the ninth with Hal Smith on first with a base on balls but Craig struck out Johnny Temple to send the game into overtime. Jim Umbricht (2-0) set New York down in order in the 10th and picked up the win when Bob Lillis led off with a single, was sacrificed to second by Al Spangler, moved to third on an infield ground out by Roman Mejias and the .45s won when lillis road home on Craig’s wild pitch. Here is the unrealistic line on both starters: Farrell (9 innings), 5 runs, 13 hits, 9 strike outs, two walks – Craig (10-innings), 6 runs, 12 hits, 5 strike outs, 6 walks, one wild pitch.
September 9, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
This game had just about everything except good pitching and a winner. The .45s and Mets send a total of ten pitchers to the mound – five each - and the game is halted at the end of eight innings because of curfew (no inning shall start after 7 p.m. on Sunday night). When the game was called each team had seven runs, ten hits and one error. This was the final game scheduled between the two teams in Houston which means next week they will attempt to play six games in three days due to earlier postponements. Only 3,630 paid for this Sunday afternoon 90 degree game that lasted over four hours with only the individual statistics going into the record books. The most interesting inning was the seventh and how the Mets scored the run that tied the game at 7-7. Jim Golden entered the game to start the inning and walked Joe Christopher and while striking out Frank Thomas and walking Elio Chacon Golden throws two wild pitches to move the runners up to second and third. With first base open Golden walks Choo Choo Coleman to load the bases and then is relieved of his duties and replaced by Don McMahon. Felix Mantilla then drives in the tying run with a sacrifice fly to Carl Warwick in center in a game that one inning later had an end but no winner or loser.
September 10, 1962 - OPEN DATE
September 11, 1962 - OPEN DATE
September 12, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
28,669 fans cram into Colt Stadium to see the final appearance of the league leading Dodgers who are in the throes of a tight pennant race with San Francisco. Ken Johnson (6-15) having one of his better outings of the season loses 1-0 on a home run by Frank Howard in the fifth inning. Before Howard pumped his 27th homer of the season Johnson had retired the first 13 Dodgers in order and pitched through two more innings allowing only two singles giving him a seven inning losing outing while allowing only three hits without a walk while striking out nine. The irony of his work today is that his teammates out hit Los Angeles with nine hits but left 10 men on base, at least one in every inning except the first. Rookie Pete Richert started and allowed five hits and two walks before manager Walter Alston took him out after he gave singles to Roman Mejias and Carl warwick to the open the fourth. Alston brought in Ed Roebuck (10-0) who pitched out of the jam and became the beneficiary of Howard’s home run that held up throughout the game. Roebuck worked 5.1 innings allowing four hits and three walks and Ron Perranoski was called upon after Roebuck walked Hal Smith with one out in the ninth and ended the game on a winning note getting pinch hitter Billy Goodman to pop to Maury Wills at short and striking out Bob Lillis looking.
This ended the next to last home series for the Colts with only a three-game set remaining at Colt Stadium on Friday, Saturday and Sunday September 21, 22 and 23 with San Francisco. On this just concluded home stand the .45s won six of their eight games against Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, New York and Los Angeles with a record of 56-90, 40 and one-half games out of first place. The Colts now face a nine-game trip to Milwaukee and New York.
September 13, 1962 - OPEN DATE
September 14, 1962 - Milwaukee, County Stadium
In the opener of a three game series, the final meeting of the year between the .45s and Braves, Milwaukee chalks up a 3-1 win. Second-year lefthander Bob Hendley (11-12) shuts down Houston with five hits in a 10 strike out performance in besting Dick Farrell (9-19) who also pitched a complete game. Three of the hits off Hendley were by Bob Lillis, Johnny Temple and Jim Pendleton – the first three batters in the game. The fourth hit scored the Colts only run, a home run by Carl Warwick. Hendley was almost unhittable after the games’ opening, retiring the next 16 batters in order before Roman Mejias opened the ninth with a single off the lefty. Farrell gave up nine hits along with his unusually low strike out total of four. Milwaukee scored two runs in the third on three hits by Amado Samuel, Roy McMillan and Eddie Mathews with the final run coming off Turk in the sixth when McMillan and Mathews again singled with the Braves scoring on Tommy Aaron’s double play ball. This was Farrell’s ninth complete game and he finished it despite his 19 losses with an ERA of 2.97.
September 15, 1962 - Milwaukee, County Stadium
A lot of runs and hits and little pitching accounted for a wild end to a 9-8 Braves win over Houston. Starter George Brunet was Kod without retiring a batter in the second inning giving up four hits and a walk that resulted in a 3-0 Milwaukee lead. Over the next six innings the .45s bounced back and took an 8-5 lead on the wings of a three run homer by Carl Warwick in the top of the eighth. The Braves cut the lead to 8-6 in the bottom half when Don McMahon gave up a lead single to Bob Taylor then wild pitched him to both second and third from where Roy McMillan squeezed him home. McMahon then walked Eddie Mathews to open the ninth and was taken out and replaced by Russ Kemmerer (4-3) who served up a two run homer to Joe Adcock to tie the game. With two outs the inning was kept alive on an error by Joey Amalfitano and Taylor’s 5th hit of the game – and manager Harry Craft called on Jim Umbricht who was greeted with a Lee Maye single for the Braves winning run. The .45s used five pitchers who gave up 11 hits while Milwaukee used four and the Colts picked up 14 but left eleven men on base. Starter Bob Shaw was charged with eleven hits in 5.2 innings and Don Nottebart (2-2) was the winning pitcher. Carl Warwick was Houston’s hitting star with five runs batted in on his home run and two singles.
September 16, 1962 - Milwaukee, County Stadium
For the second straight game Houston loses in the ninth inning to Milwaukee 5-4. Bob Lillis had given the .45s the lead in the third on a solo home run and Houston scored three more in the fourth on a single by Joey Amalfitano, a run-scoring double by Lillis and two RBI on Al Spangler’s base hit. Milwaukee cut the lead to 4-1 on Del Crandall’s home run off Bruce in the fifth then knocked Bruce out in the seventh with a three-run outburst that tied the game 4-4. Lew Burdette (10-9) the Braves fifth pitcher entered after Claude Raymond had loaded the bases with two outs in the ninth but got out of the jam when Merritt Ranew grounded out. Don McMahon (5-6) after a shaky 8th couldn’t get by the first batter in the ninth as Gus Bell greeted him with the game ending home run. The sweep by the Braves finishes the season series with Milwaukee on top 11-7.
September 17, 1962 - OPEN DATE
September 18, 1962 - New York, Polo Grounds
Houston and New York begin a busy schedule of six games in three days because of earlier postponements and the .45s open the series with a sweep of a twi-night doubleheader 6-2 and 8-6. Ken Johnson (7-15) went the distance pitching a six-hitter in the opener with nine strike outs. The Colts touched up Mets starter Al Jackson (8-19) with ten hits and the help of three New York errors. Johnson squeezed in Roman Mejias who had tripled in the fifth inning to start the scoring and a big five-hit outburst in the seventh scored four more. The final tally came in the ninth on two Mets errors, a walk and a wild pitch for the 6-2 win.
Dick Drott (1-0) starts the second game following his recall from Oklahoma City and picks up the win going 5.1 innings in a 8-6 Houston victory. Drott allowed only three hits but six walks were involved in his removable in favor of Russ Kemmerer who was charged with one run and Jim Umbricht who served up a two-run homer in the ninth to Jim Hickman. Larry Foss (0-1) was pummeled for ten hits in five innings, one a two-run homer by Merritt Ranew and a solo shot by Dave L. Roberts. Bob Aspromonte, Joey Amalfitano and Norm Larker accounted for the other six runs off Foss. Mejias drove in his 69th and 70th runs in the sixth following two walks by Mets rookie Ray Daviault.
Drott was drafted from the Cubs in the 1961 expansion draft for $75,000 but has seen limited action this season because of his recall into army reserve active duty. He joined the Colt .45s briefly in July then was sent to Oklahoma City pitching in eight games with a 3-1 record before being recalled. Drott was with the Cubs for five seasons compiling a 25-34 record.
September 19, 1962 - New York, Polo Grounds
Both games called off because of weather problems...the two clubs will play two games tomorrow to complete their season series. One of the two games scheduled for today has been cancelled and assuming two are played tomorrow the season series will be trimmed from 18 games to 16 with no makeup dates available.
September 20, 1962 - New York, Polo Grounds
The Colt.45s finish the season against the “other” expansion team by sweeping their second straight doubleheader from the Mets 7-2 and 5-4. The season series ends with Houston taking the series 13-3 and winning six of the eight games in New York. The Mets have already clinched last place (115 losses) in the 10-club circuit.
Houston has little trouble subduing the Mets in the first game as Jim Golden (7-11) scatters nine hits in 7.1 innings in beating New York for the fourth time without a loss. The .45s jumped on Jay Hook (8-18) in the second inning to put the Colts into a 3-1 lead. The inning was keyed by Rod Kanehl’s error on Roman Mejias’ grounder to third, a base on balls to Bob Aspromonte and from then on it was Houston’s battery of catcher Merritt Ranew and Golden to get the three runs in. Ranew singled in Mejias and following a sacrifice bunt by Joey Amalfitano Golden singled in Aspro and the Fox. The .45s scored three more in the 8th with Ranew and Golden adding to their figures they accumulated in the second inning – each doubled and drove in a run with Amalfitano getting the other RBI. Norm Larker also singled in a ninth inning run. The Ranew-Golden combination accounted for four hits and five runs batted in. Golden raised his season’s batting average to .231.
In the second game New York forces the Colts into extra innings 5-4. Dick Farrell fell behind 4-0 pitching the first six innings giving up only four hits, but two home runs by Frank Thomas accounted for three of those markers. At the same time Mets starter Roger Craig trying to elude his 24th loss of the season allowed only two Houston hits in his first six innings – then, beginning with two outs in the second set down the next 16 batters before running into a four hit seventh inning that cut New York’s lead to 4-3. After two outs the Colts picked up their runs on a double by Roman Mejias with a following single by Bob Aspromonte and a two-run homer by Hal Smith. Down by a run in the top of the ninth Aspromonte and Smith single and the .45s tie on a ground out. Farrell is removed for a pinch hitter in the 7th and Don McMahon works two scoreless innings with Russ Kemmerer (5-3) pitching the remainder of the game. The Colts push over the potential winning run in the 12th with Kemmerer finishing with a 1-2-3 bottom half for the Houston win. Ray Daviault (1-5) is the loser going the final three innings for the Mets allowing the winning run on singles by Dave Roberts, Smith and Aspromonte. The .45s rolled up 13 hits with Aspro going 5-for-5.
This had to be a sad day for New York National League fans as the Mets opening season in the league is fast coming to a close. The first frost of the season is predicted for tonight and most of the 1,481 in attendance at the Polo Grounds today probably are still in withdrawal over their beloved Giants. Next season the Mets will be back in this storied stadium for one more year and the ghosts of McGraw, Hubbell, Ott, Terry, Mays, Thomson and many others will remain be in their thoughts, never to forgive the loss of not only the Giants but also the Dodgers.
They say, time heals every thing, but eventually this park will meet its fate to the wrecking ball and when that happens memories will again surface for those who remember as they stand on Coogans Bluff and lament. “There used to be a ball park right here!”
For the Houston Colt.45s they are still alive even though in eighth place as they begin their final nine games of their initial season in the National League deeply involved in the pennant race – a pennant race they cannot win but a pennant race in which they may have a lot to say who does – six games against San Francisco and three with the Dodgers in the next ten days. Tomorrow the first three at Colt Stadium against the Giants at 8:00. The .45s return to Houston on Eastern flight 543 at 12:15 a.m. with a record of 60-91 .397
September 21, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Back to Houston for the final three home games of the season the .45s find themselves in a slugfest that is easily won by the Giants 11-5. 12,180 fans are on hand to see San Francisco jump all over starter George Brunet (2-3) and his relief Dick Drott for eight runs and ten hits in the first two innings. Brunet is knocked out in the first allowing four of those hits and two runs without retiring a batter. However, it was Drott who took the most punishment in the two innings he worked – six runs and five hits. Before the onslaught of 18 hits was complete the Colts had sent five pitchers to the hill and totaled 12 hits of their own, but nine of them were left on base. Rookie Gaylord Perry (3-1) gave up all 12 hits and all five runs to Houston and was lifted with two runs in, two men on and two outs in the ninth – Stu Miller got the last out. Bob Aspromonte, who entered the game with four consecutive hits in his last game against New York, ran the streak to seven before grounding out in the eighth.
September 22, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
Houston turns a 5-5 tie with San Francisco into a 6-5 ninth inning victory as the Dodger’s magic number to clinch the pennant over the Giants is cut to four. LA registered their 100th win in their victory today. Also, the first National League season now has the Mets at 116 defeats and the Cubs 100 losses.
Although the final score is fairly low each skipper used five pitchers this evening and each team had 11 hits. The Giants ace of the staff 25-year-old Juan Marichal was taken out after giving up two hits and a walk to start the sixth. San Francisco had a 4-1 lead at the time with the Colts run coming on a homer by Carl Warwick to open bottom of the first. Bob Bolin took over for Marichal and gave up three more hits to allow the Colts to tie 4-4. Ken Johnson had started but was knocked out in the third and Houston’s third pitcher George Brunet gave the lead back on a solo home run in the 8th to Willie Mays. In the ninth with Stu Miller (4-8) pitching Carl Warwick’s single, a walk and a hit batsman led to Roman Mejias game winning hit. Jim Umbricht (3-0) retired the Giants in order in the 9th.
September 23, 1962 - Houston, Colt Stadium
It was a hot Sunday afternoon as the Colts engaged San Francisco in their final home game of the season. The mercury stood at 88 and the humidity was 38%. A comparative good crowd of 9,623 for a day game was on hand to run the season’s paid to 924,456. The largest crowd of the season was 30,027 against the Dodgers on that infamous sunny Sunday June 10th – a day that one year later would make it possible for regular Sunday night ball in the majors.
On this day Houston would lose to the Giants 10-3 to finish their home record at 32 wins and 48 losses. Billy O’Dell (19-13) had the .45s shut out until the ninth when he allowed his 6th and 7th hits to George Williams and Carl Warwick, plus two Giants errors to finish with for the win. Bob Bruce (9-9) was hit hard through his 5.1 innings giving up five runs and eight hits. The Giants sent eleven batters to the plate in the sixth and Bobby Tiefenauer and Russ Kemmerer each worked one-third inning after Bruce was lifted – the duo allowed the remaining five runs and six hits that ended with San Francisco scoring seven runs, three of them coming off Tiefenauer’s three-run homer to Willie McCovey.
Both the Giants and Dodgers are off tomorrow as well as the Colts as Houston goes into Los Angeles to face Don Drysdale, Johnny Podres and Sandy Koufax in the their final three games against the Dodgers.
September 24, 1962 - OPEN DATE
September 25, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
Houston sends word to the Dodgers they will not be patsies going into the final week of the season as they open their three game series with a 10-inning victory 3-2 on Al Spangler’s home run. Dick Farrell (10-19) and Don Drysdale lock up in a tight pitchers battle through the first seven innings. Drysdale is lifted after seven following a single by J.C. Hartman and Spangler’s game tying ninth triple of the season. In the top of the 10th with one out Spangler pulls an Ed Roebuck (10-1) pitch down the right field line just inside the foul pole at the 330 mark giving the .45s a 3-2 lead. Farrell protected the lead by getting Maury Wills and Jim Gilliam to ground out but Willie Davis’ single kept the inning alive. Now it was Turk facing Tommie Davis the National League’s leading hitter with an average of .343 entering today’s game. Tommie had already doubled and singled in four at bats against Farrell but Turk was in charge this time getting Davis on a fly to Spangler in left field – fittingly Spangler carried the winning ball back to the club house and Los Angeles’ league leading magic number remained at four with five games to play. Incidentally, Farrell struck out seven Dodgers to run his total to 200 in 233.2 innings. Spangler’s home run was only his fifth of the season and Roebuck’s loss was his first in eleven decisions.
September 26, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
The Dodgers savage Houston’s pitching staff for 17 hits in a 13-1 romp to even the series at a game apiece. Starter George Brunet (2-4) is lifted in the third inning after giving Los Angeles a 4-1 lead. The .45s had jumped to a 1-0 lead in the first after three straight hits by Al Heist, Jim Pendleton and Johnny Temple following two outs against starter Johnny Podres (15-12) but from that point on it was all Dodgers with Podres scattering his remaining five hits over the final eight innings. LA roughed up Russ Kemmerer for four runs and six hits in his two-thirds of an inning, three of the runs coming on the 31st home run by Frank Howard in the fourth inning. Bobby Tiefenauer dug an even deeper hole for the Colts allowing five runs and seven hits in the final 4.1 innings.
September 27, 1962 - Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium
The Colt .45s finish their season series with Los Angeles with an 8-6 victory and now move onto their final three games of the season with San Francisco. The Dodgers took the season series 12-6 while edging the Colts 4-5 here at Dodger Stadium. After LA took a 3-0 lead tonight in the third off starter Jim Golden with four hits, Roman Mejias cut the Dodger lead to 3-2 in the fifth with his 24th home run of the season off Sandy Koufax. The 45s stormed ahead in the sixth on a four run inning off Koufax and reliever Ed Roebuck then added two more for their 8-6 lead off two other relief pitchers, Larry Sherry and Ron Perranoski (6-5). Jim Umbricht (4-0) worked the final four innings giving up three hits, walking one and striking out three. Perranoski set a major league record when he appeared in his 65th game. Mejias drove in three runs to up his total for the season to 76.
September 28, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park - POSTPONED RAIN
September 29, 1962 - San Francisco, Candlestick Park
The Giants pull out the heavy lumber to win the first game of this afternoon’s doubleheader and rack up an 11-8 victory. Houston comes back to win the second game 4-1 to keep San Francisco and Los Angeles in a virtual dead heat for the pennant in this the next to last day of the season.
The Giants wasted no time in going out in front in the opener scoring five runs in the bottom of the first off Ken Johnson (7-16) to take a 5-2 lead. Houston had scored two runs off Jack Sanford (24-7) in the top of the first on a walk to Carl Warwick, a double by Al Spangler, and singles by Norm Larker and Dave Roberts. San Francisco came right back in the second with four more runs off Bobby Tiefenauer to up their lead to 9-2. By the end of the fourth the Giants had scored all 11 of their runs and nine of their 11 hits. Tiefenauer in his six innings would give up six runs and seven hits including home runs to Tom Haller, Willie McCovey and Orlando Cepeda. The Colts stranded 11 of their 18 runners off Sanford and Stu Miller.
In the late afternoon game Bob Bruce (10-9) went the distance to out pitch Juan Marichal (18-11) 4-2 for the split of the twin bill. The Giants did all their scoring in the first two innings – a solo homer by Matty Alou in the first and in the second inning when San Francisco put together a single by Orlando Cepeda, a sacrifice, hit batsman, an intentional walk with Marichal driving in their second and last run. Carl Warwick opened the ball game with a base on balls and scored on a double by Dave Roberts. The Colts took the lead in the third on Norm Larker’s two-run homer then tacked on their insurance run in the fifth on Bruce’s lead single, a sacrifice, an error by Jose Pagan and Roberts’ second RBI of the game. Bruce allowed only six hits while striking out nine and was just wild enough to keep the Giants loose – two walks, two hit batters and a wild pitch.
The National League pennant is on the line tomorrow with the Dodgers magic number one. Los Angeles needs a victory over St.Louis or a San Francisco loss to Houston to
win the flag. A Dodgers loss and a Giants win means a best of three playoff beginning tomorrow at Candlestick.
Thumbnail sketches for the 1962 Colts:
35 Jim Golden. pitcher..came to Colt.45s from Los Angeles in National League player pool for $50,000..has appeared in 29 major league games over two-year period, pitching 49 innings with 2-1 record..has spent seven years in the minors with a won-lost mark of 73-73..throw right, bats left..stands six feet weighs 175..named the outstanding pitcher in the American Association in 1960 when he won 20 and lost nine with Indianapolis..born March 20, 1936 at Eldon, Missouri..attended Washburn College two years.
10 Norm Larker, first base..came to Colts from Los Angeles Dodgers for $75,000..has four-year major league batting average of .293..bats left, throws left..stands six feet weighs 195..played in World Series with Dodgers in 1959, and made National League All-Star team in 1960, missing NL batting title with average of .323 to .325 by Pittsburgh’s Dick Groat..hit .270 last season with Los Angeles, ..born December 27, 1930 at Beaver Meadows, Pennsylvania..plans to move to Houston.
33 Dean Stone. pitcher..drafted by Colt.45s last December from Charleston of American Association for $25,000..was in Cardinals chain..has six-year major league record 25-35 with Washington, Red Sox and St.Louis..throws left, bats left..stands 6-4 weighs 225..had 12-8 record at Charleston last season with 2.73 ERA..born September 1, 1929 at Moline, Illinois.
23 Jim Pendleton. outfielder..purchased by Colts from Jersey City last October..has seven years of major league experience with Milwaukee, Pittsburgh and Cincinnati with lifetime batting average of .260..hit.304 with 12 home runs with Jersey City in International League last season..bats right, throws right..born January 7, 1924 at St.Charles, Missouri..never has played lower than Triple-A.
43 Dick Farrell. pitcher..came to Colt.45s from Los Angeles for $125,000 in National League player pool..has six-year major league record of 37-31, appearing in 259 games..was 8-7 at Philadelphia and Los Angeles last season..is one of fastest pitchers in baseball..may be both starter and reliever with Colts..throws right, bats right..stands 6-4 weighs 220..born April 8, 1934 in Boston..
15 Bob Lillis. infielder..came to Colt.45s from St.Louis Cardinals for $75,000..has four-year major league batting average of .295 for 202 games..one of the best infielders in the game, can play 2B, SS and 3B..bats right, throws right..stands 5-11 weighs 160..operates his own baseball school at Rosemont, California..born June 2, 1930 at Altadena, California..attended University of Southern California.
30 Bob Bruce. pitcher..came to Colts with Manny Montejo last December in trade with Detroit for Sad Sam Jones..appeared in 50 games with Detroit in last three seasons with 5-10 record..was 2-0 with Denver in American Association last year..has been bothered by sore arm, now healed..throws right, bats right..led American Association in strikeouts in 1959 at Charleston with 177..born May 16, 1934 at Detroit..attended Alma College.
22 Al Heist. outfielder..purchased by Colt.45s from Cubs for $75,000 in National League player pool..has two-year major league batting average of .260..hit .255 with Chicago last season with seven home runs..one of best defensive centerfielders in baseball..bats right, throws right..stands 6-3 weighs 180..once played 161 games without an error..born October 5, 1927 in Brooklyn.
27 Pidge Browne. first base..became property of Colt.45s when Houston Sports Association purchased Houston Buffs..long-time Buff favorite in both Texas League and American Association..has lifetime minor league average of .299 and has hit 184 home runs since breaking into organized baseball in 1949..can play outfield as well as first base..stands 6-1 and weighs 205..bats left, throws left..born March 21, 1929 at Peekskill, New York..makes his home in Houston.
14 Bob Aspromonte. third base..came to Colts from Los Angeles for $75,000..has three-year major league average of .211 in 69 games..highly regarded by Paul Richards and Harry Craft, who expect him to become a great one..can play shortstop as well as third..bats right, throws right..excellent arm..stands 6-2 and weighs 185..hit .241 last season for Dodgers in 47 games..born in Brooklyn June 19, 1938..has brother, Ken, with Cleveland Indians.
36 Ken Johnson. pitcher..came to Colts from last year’s National League championship Reds, for $75,000 in player pool..was 6-2 last year, contributing considerably to Cincinnati’s dash to pennant.. made brief appearance in World Series, pitching to two batters..has four-year major league record of 12-17, appearing in 67 games..throws right, bats right..stands 6-4 and weighs 210..born June 16, 1933 at West Palm Beach, Forida.
20 Don Taussig. outfielder..purchased from St.Louis in National League player pool for $75,000..has two-year major league batting average of .269 but hit .287 last season with Cardinals..fine defensive centerfilder, but can play any outfield position..bats right, throws right..stands 6-1 and weighs 185..born February 19, 1932 in New York City..graduate of Hofstra College, also attended Rutgers and Columbia.
31 Al Cicotte. pitcher..purchased by Colt.45s last October from St.Louis Cardinals..picked as minor league "player of the year" in 1960 after great 16-7 season with Toronto in International League..has record of 10-13 in four seasons in majors, appearing in 97 games with the Yankees, Washington and Detroit in addition to the Cardinals..bats right, throws right..stands 6-3 and weighs 200 pounds..born December 23, 1929 at Melvindale, Michigan..attended Henry Ford Community College.
8 Hal Smith. catcher..came to Colts from Pittsburgh Pirates for $125,000..has lifetime average of .277 for seven years in majors..bats right, throws right..stands 6-1 and weighs 195..named player representative this spring at Apache Junction..rated as one of best defensive catchers in baseball..can play 3B or 1B if needed..plays guitar and sings professionally..plans to buy home in Houston immediately and live here..born December 7, 1930 at West Frankford, Illinois.
44 Bobby Tiefenauer. pitcher..purchased by Colt.45s from St.Louis Cardinals for undisclosed sum..has appeared in 27 major league games in three-year period, winning one and losing four..won 10 and lost two last season with 2.34 earned run average..pitched for Houston Buffs in 1953 and had 9-3 record..standout knuckleball pitcher..can start or relieve, but has been used primarily as reliever..bats right, throws right..stands 6-2 and weighs 185..born October 19, 1929 at Desloge, Missouri.
24 Johnny Weekly. outfielder..drafted by Colts last November from Tacoma of the Pacific Coast League for $25,000..only 24 years old, he's regarded as a fine major league prospect..hit .287 last season for Victoria of the Texas League, with 21 home runs..hit 23 home runs in same league in 1959 for Corpus Christi..bats right, throws right..stands six feet and weighs 200..striking resemblance to Willie Mays..born June 4, 1937 at New Orleans..attended Diablo Valley College in California.
45 Jim Umbricht. pitcher..came to Colt.45s from Pittsburgh Pirates for $50,000 in National League player pool..spent part of three seasons with Pirates appearing in 19 games, winning one and losing two..had 10-2 record last season with Charleston in International League with brilliant 2.34 ERA..bats right, throws right..stands 6-4 and weighs 215..club's best golfer..born September 17, 1930 in Chicago..now makes home in Houston..graduated for University of Georgia in 1953.
46 Hal Woodeshick. pitcher..purchased from Detroit Tigers in October..has five years experience in major leagues with Detroit Cleveland and Washington..has five year record of 16-20, appearing in 20 games..had 4-3 record at Detroit last season entirely in relief and two wins and one loss at Charleston in the International League..can be used as either starter or reliever..stands 6-2 and weighs 200..throws left, bats right..born August 24, 1932 at Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania..makes home at Charleston, West Virginia.
11 Joey Amalfitano. second base..came to Colts from San Francisco Giants for $125,000..has four-year major league average of .262..regarded as fine defensive infielder, with ability to play all infield positions..bats right, throws right..stands 5-11 and weighs 175..hit .255 with Giants last season, playing in 109 games..Giants have desperately tried to get him back this spring..born January 23, 1935 at San Pedro, California.
42 Bobby Shantz. pitcher..came to Colt.45s from Pittsburgh Pirates for $75,000 in National League player pool..13-year veteran of major league pitching with record of 105 victories and 86 defeats..won 24 and lost 7 for Philadelphia Athletics in 1952 and named Most Valuable player in American League..one of greatest fielding pitchers in baseball history..throws left, bats right, and is exceptional hitter..had 6-3 record for Pirates last year as a reliever..stands just 5-7 and weighs 150..born September 26, 1925 at Pottstown, Pennsylvania.
25 Roman Mejias. outfielder..purchased from Pittsburgh Pirates for $75,000 in National League player pool..has six years of major league experience, with lifetime batting average of .249..played most of last season at Columbus in International League, hit .278 with 21 home runs..bats right, throws right..stands six feet and weighs 175..can play any outfield position..born August 9, 1932 in Las Villas, Cuba.