Named Astros in honor of NASA which headquarters in Houston.
A.J. Hinch 2015-
Minute Maid Park 2000-
First Game Played April 10, 1962
P.O. Box 288
Houston, TX 77001
Phone: (713) 259-8000
Harry Craft 1962-1964
Lum Harris 1964-1965
Grady Hatton 1966-1968
Harry Walker 1968-1972
Salty Parker 1972
Leo Durocher 1972-1973
Preston Gomez 1974-1975
Bill Virdon 1975-1982
Bob Lillis 1982-1985
Hal Lanier 1986-1988
Art Howe 1989-1993
Terry Collins 1994-1996
Larry Dierker* 1997- 2001
Jimy Williams 2002-2004
Phil Garner 2004-2007
Cecil Cooper 2007-2009
Dave Clark 2009
Brad Mills 2010-2012
Tony DeFrancesco 2012
Bo Porter 2013-2014
Tom Lawless 2014
A.J. Hinch 2015-Present
*-1999 Matt Galante illness sub
Colt Stadium 1962-1964
The Astrodome 1965-1999
Minute Maid Park* 2000-Present
*-Known as Enron Field 2000-01 &
Astros Field 2002
World Series Appearances: (1)
LCS Appearances: (4)
1980, 1986, 2004, 2005
Division Champions: (7)
1980, 1981*, 1986, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001
*- Split Season won 2nd Half.
Wild Card: (3)
2004, 2005, 2015
Hall of Famers: (8)
Craig Biggio C-2B 1988-2007
Leo Durrocher MGR 1972-1973
Nelie Fox 2B 1964-1965
Eddie Mathews 3B 1967
Joe Morgan 2B 1963-1971. 1980
Robin Roberts RHP 1965-1966
Nolan Ryan RHP 1980-1988
Don Sutton RHP 1981-1982
Retired Numbers: (10)
5 Jeff Bagwell 1B 1991-2005
7 Craig Biggio C-2B 1988-2007
24 Jimmy Wynn OF 1963-1973
25 Jose Cruz OF 1975-1987
32 Jim Umbricht RHP 1962-1963
33 Mike Scott RHP 1983-1991
34 Nolan Ryan RHP 1980-1988
40 Don Wilson RHP 1966-1974
42 Jackie Robinson (Retired by MLB)
49 Larry Dierker RHP 1964-1976
All-Star Games Hosted: (3)
1968, 1986, 2004
All-Star Game MVP:
Manager of the Year: (2)
1986 Hal Lanier
1998 Larry Dierker
Rookie of the Year: (2)
1991 Jeff Bagwell 1B
2015 Carlos Correa SS
Fireman Award: (2)
1999 Billy Wagner LHP
2008 Jose Valverde RHP
Hank Aaron Award:
Cy Young: (3)
1986 Mike Scott RHP
2004 Roger Clemens RHP
2015 Dallas Keuchel LHP
1994 Jeff Bagwell 1B
LCS MVP: (2)
1986 Mike Scott RHP
2005 Roy Oswalt RHP
World Series MVP:
No Hitters: (11)
5/17/1963 Dan Nottebart
4/23/1964 Ken Johnson
6/18/1967 Don Wilson
5/1/1969 Don Wilson
7/9/1976 Larry Dierker
4/7/1979 Ken Forsch
9/26/1981 Nolan Ryan
9/25/1986 Mike Scott
9/8/1993 Darryl Kile
6/11/2003 Combined Roy Oswalt 1 Peter Munro 2.2, Kirk Saarloos 1.1, Brad Lidge 2, Octavio Dotel 1, and Billy Wagner 1
8/21/2015 Mike Fiers
Cycle Hitters: (8)
8/2/1972 Cesar Cedeño
8/9/1976 Cesar Cedeño
6/24/1977 Bob Watson
8/25/1992 Andujar Cedeño
7/18/2001 Jeff Bagwell
4/8/2002 Craig Biggio
7/28/2006 Luke Scott
7/19/2013 Brandon Barnes
On the Air:
Root Sports Southwest
KBME (790 AM); KLAT (1010-AM) Spanish
Alan Ashby, Geoff Blum and Bill Brown-TV; Robrt Ford and Steve Sparks-Radio; Francisco Romero and Alex Treviño-Spanish
Ford C. Frick Recipients: (3)
Gene Elston 1962-1986
Milo Hamilton 1985-Present
Harry Kalas 1965-1971
Spring Training History: (3)
Apache Junction, AZ 1962-1963
Cocoa Beach, FL 1964-1984
Kissimmee, FL 1985-2014
©MMXV Tank Productions. Stats researched by Frank Fleming, all information, statistics, logos, and team names are property of Major League Baseball. This site is not affiliated with the Houston Astros or MLB. This site is maintained for research purposes only. All logos used on this page were from Chris Creamer's Sports Logos Page.
Page created on February 25, 2001. Last updated on December 14, 2015 at 11:20 pm ET.
Back to Baseball Main
American League Team Index
Houston Colt .45's 1962-1964
Houston Astros 1965-Present
On The Farm:
AAA: Fresno Grizzlies
AA: Corpus Christi Hooks
A: Lancaster Jet Hawks
A: Quad Cities River Bandits
A: Tri-City Valley Cats
R: Greeneville Astros
1962: On April 10th the Colt .45's get off to a flying start winning their first game 11-2 over the Chicago Cubs. That first year to keep the Colt .45s from appearing bland, Judge Roy Hofheinz, the visionary who ran the franchise, got the inspired idea to deck them out in blue cowboy suits on road trips, with matching hats and boots. Passing through airports, they were a puzzling sight to travelers who did not get the connection to Texas. The players finally refused to wear the outfits and the Judge gave up. The Colt .45's would go on to finish in eighth Place with a 64-96 record.
1963: In their second season the Colt .45's manage to avoid last place and 100 losses again as they post a 66-96 record while finishing in ninth place.
1964: Tragedy strikes the Colts as pitcher Jim Umbricht loses his battle with cancer, the team would go on to retire his number 32 in his honor. That year the Colt .45's also made history of dubious nature when, Ken Johnson became the first Major League pitcher ever to pitch a nine inning No Hitter and lose in an April 23rd game against the Cincinnati Reds. The team would go on to finish in ninth place with a 66-96 record in their final year known as the Colt .45's.
1965: The newly renamed Astros open up the Astrodome, and become the first professional team to play indoors. The Astros chose to play indoors because of unbearably hot summers in Texas, which in the past caused games to be held up until after sunset. The Astros peeled off a ten game winning streak, an occurrence so unthinkable that their opponents accused them of tinkering with the air conditioning currents, causing the air to blow out when the home team was at bat. If only winning had been so simple, as the Astros still finished in ninth place with a 65-97 record.
1966: At first the Astrodome used grass, which was allowed to grow with panels that allowed sun in for the grass to grow, but sunlight glare made seeing the ball impossible to see the roof is painted and the grass died. So the Astros had to search for a grass substitute, the Astros would make a deal for a new type for a surface that would become the Bain to traditional sports fans everywhere. The Astros allowed the new surface to be called Astroturf so the inventor could get more attention, as the Astros could get it for free. Astroturf would soon spread like an out of control virus throughout professional, and colligate sports. By 1986, ten Major League Parks would have Astroturf installed. Astroturf had the advantage of being easy to maintain it was easy to keep clean there was no need for constant mowing and watering. It was tough and durable it was not easily ripped up by cleats, and thus could be used continuously for ten years or more. However Astroturf would get discolored by sunlight, it would develop creases, it was unforgiving to the bodies of players who attempt to slide on it, and it caused serve knee, and leg injuries that shortened many players' careers. The disadvantages would later hurt teams because many players when faced with free agency would chose to play elsewhere rather than having the burden of playing on Astroturf. In their first year on Astroturf the Astros would post a 72-90 record, and finnish in eighth place.
1967: Future Hall of Famer Eddie Mathews plays just half of season with Astros but manages to slam his 500th career home run, as the Astros finished ninth place again with a 69-93 record.
1968: In the year of the pitcher the Astros have some highlights on the mound themselves. First came on April 15th when the Astros and the New York Mets looked horns in a game at the Astrodome that went 24 innings before the Astros scored the game's only run. On July 14th Don Wilson would make headlines when he struck out 18 batters in a 6-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds. The Astros would also have four pitchers win ten games Don Wilson (13), Larry Dierker (12) Dave Guisti (11) and Denny LeMaster (10). However the team would finish in last place with a 72-90 record.
1969: After being no hit by Jim Maloney and the Cincinnati Reds on April 30, Don Wilson returns the favor to the Reds the next night. That year would see Larry Dierker become the first Astor pitcher to win 20 games, as the team finally achieved the .500 mark finishing 81-81 and in fifth Place in the National League Western Division.
1970: The Astros still can't manage to put together a winning season as they finish in fourth place with a mediocre 79-83 record.
1971: Cesar Cedeño leads the league with 40 doubles and Roger Metzger and Joe Morgan share the league lead with 11 triples each. However, the Astros still struggle to finish in fourth Place with a 79-83 record.
1972: Jerry Reuss and Larry Dierker hurl back-to-back one hitters on June 18th against the Philadelphia Phillies and June 19th vs. the New York Mets, respectively. The Astros would go to finish with their first winning season at 84-69, and in second place.
1973: The Astros post their second straight winning season as they post an 82-80 record while finishing in fourth place in what would end up Leo Durrocher's final season in a prestigious managerial career.
1974: Under new Manger Preston Gomez the Astros can only muster a .500 record while finishing in fourth place at 81-81.
1975: Tragedy strikes the Astros a month before spring training as Longtime Ace pitcher Don Wilson commits suicide using Carbon Monoxide Poising. It would be a year as heartache as the Astros finish with their worst record ever at 64-97. That year also saw the appointment of Tal Smith as Club President and General Manager. His first move was to bring in Bill Virdon to replace Preston Gomez as manager in the middle of the season.
1976: J.R. Richard becomes Houston's second 20-game winner, while Cesar Cedeño sets a club mark with 58 stolen bases and earns his fifth-straight Gold Glove. The Astros would go on to finish with a third place 80-82 record.
1977: Three Astros steal more than 40 bases (Cesar Cedeño, 61; Jose Cruz, 44; Enos Cabell, 42), as the Astros finish in thrd place with an 81-81 break even record.
1978: J.R. Richard becomes the first National League right-handed pitcher to top the 300-strikeout mark in a season with 303. However the Astros would struggle to finish in fifth place with a 74-88 record.
1979: J.R. Richard tops himself by striking out 313 batters. Meanwhile, Joe Niekro who sets a club record with 21 wins, as the Astros finish just a game and half out of first with an 89-73 record. Following the season the Astros make history by making Nolan Ryan the first player to make a million dollars in one season.
1980: The Astros who looked well on their way to a division title were dealt a serve blow midway through the season when star pitcher J.R. Richard suffers a stroke. The stroke would end Richard's promising career, which saw him win 107 games in his first 10 years. However, the Astros would overcome the loss of Richard and would end the season in a flatfooted tie with Los Angeles Dodgers with a record of 92-70. The Astros would easily defeat the Dodgers in a one game playoff to claim their first ever Division Title, and advance on t the playoffs. In the NLCS the Astros would take two of the first three games from the Philadelphia Phillies to put themselves one game away from a trip to the World Series. However the Astros could not hold leads in the final two games and would end up losing the series with a heartbreaking ten inning loss in Game 5.
1981: The Astros get off to a slow start and sit at 28-29, and are eight games out of first place on June 15th when a strike halts the season. When the players returned 50 days later it was determined that they would play a split season giving the Astros new hope for a division title. The Astros would take advantage of their second chance and would win the second half title with a 33-20 record. During the second half run Nolan Ryan breaks Sandy Koufax record by hurling his 5th career No Hitter against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Astros would face the Dodgers again in a 5-game series for the Western Division Title. The Astros jump out quickly in the series winning the first two games at the Astrodome, and head to Los Angeles needing just one win in Dodger Stadium to advance to the NLCS for the second year in a row. However, the Astros would end up letting the lead slip away as the eventual World Champion Dodgers won all three games at home.
1982: The Astros get off to a slow start, and never recover as Manager Bill Virdon is fired. Bob Lillis would take over in August and the Astros would play 28-23 under Lillis, to slightly improve their season, which ends with a disappointing 77-85 record.
1983: The Astros stumble out of the gate losing their first nine games. However the team would recover nicely to finish with a solid 85-77 record. During the season Nolan Ryan would pass Walter Johnson in career strikeouts, although at the time he is the second player to do so in the season Ryan would eventual go on to become the all-time strikeout king.
1984: The Astros get off to a slow start again as star shortstop Dickie Thon is lost for the season after he is struck in the head by a fastball from Mike Torrez of the New York Mets. The Astros would go on to finish with an 80-82 record, in a second Place tie.
1985: On July 11th Nolan Ryan strikes out Danny Heep of the New York to get his 4,000th career strike out. The Astros would go on to finish in third Place with an 83-79 record.
1986: With Mike Scott dominating the National League on the way to a Cy Young award the Astros easily win the Division with a 96-66 record. The highlight of the season would come on September 25th when Mike Scott pitches a No Hitter to clinch the National League Western Division. Facing the New York Mets in the NLCS, Scott continued his dominance with a 1-0 complete game win, while striking out 14 in a Game 1 pitcher's duel with Dwight Gooden, as Glenn Davis supplied the offense with a second inning home run. After dropping Game 2, the Astros were in position to take Game 3 at Shea Stadium, as they had a 5-4 lead in the ninth inning. However, Closer Dave Smith yielded a two run home run to Len Dykstra as the Mets won in dramatic fashion 6-5. In Game 4 it was Mike Scott again, as the frustrated Mets, thought the pitcher whom they gave up on was scuffing the baseball as the Astros even the series with a 3-1 win. In Game 5 the Astros would get another solid pitching performance from an ex-Met as Nolan Ryan allowed just one run on two hits, matching Dwight Gooden pitch for pitch, before the Mets won the game in 12 innings 2-1. In the Game 6 the Astros again had the Mets on the ropes with a 3-0 lead in the ninth inning, behind a masterful performance from Bob Knepper, with Mike Scott poised to start Game 7. However, the Mets would rally to send the game to extra innings against the Astros bullpen. The Astros would fall behind 4-3 in the 14th inning but Billy Hatcher hit a towering home run off the foul poll to send the game to the 15th inning. After the Mets would than scored three runs in the 16th Inning, the never say die Astros would score twice before Kevin Bass came to the plate with tying and winning runs on base. However, Bass would strike out as the Mets went on to win the World Series.
1987: Nolan Ryan leads the majors in strikeouts with 270 and ties for the lead in ERA with a 2.76 mark. However, the Astros would struggle to a thirrd place 76-86 finish.
1988: The Astros hover around .500 all season as they finish in fifth place with a record of 82-80.
1989: Despite the loss of Nolan Ryan to their Lone Star State rival Texas Rangers, the Astros manage to put together a strong season finishing 86-76 in third place just six games out of 1st.
1990: Despite the superb pitching of Danny Darwin who has the best ERA in the National League, the Astros struggle with a 75-87 record that lands them in fourth place.
1991: In what is clearly a rebuilding year, the Astros trade away what's left of their 1986 Playoff team, and become one of the worst teams in baseball with a 65-97 record. However, bright days are clearly ahead for the team as 1B Jeff Bagwell wins the National League Rookie of the Year, while Craig Biggio make the All-Star team for the first time.
1992: With the Astrodome hosting the 1992 Republican Convention the Astros are forced to go on the road for a grueling 26 days. Despite the long road trip, the Astros have a solid second half, and place fourth with an 81-81 record. That same year the Astros name Bob Watson General Manager making him the first African American to hold such a position in Major League Baseball history. Watson would remain in the post until 1995.
1993: The Astros set several new team records in hitting, as the team continues to improve finishing in third Place with an 85-77 record.
1994: On August 12th the Astros sit at 66-49, only a half game out of first place in the newly formed National League Central Division. However, that would end up being the final day of the season as the players went on a strike that would wipe out the entire postseason. Despite the shortened season Jeff Bagwell sets team records in HR with 39, and RBI with 116. Bagwell would go on to become the third player in National League history to be voted MVP unanimously.
1995: The Astros hurt their chances of winning the Division Title by performing poorly in head-to-head match ups with Cincinnati Reds. However the Astros have the Wild Card to fall back on and battle the Colorado Rockies until the last day of the season for the first ever Wild Card spot in the National League. However the Astros would come up one game short with a solid 76-68 record.
1996: The Astros hold a two and a half game lead for the National League Central Division and the end of August. However, the Astros would suffer a terrible 8-17 September, and would end the season with an 82-80 record; six games behind the division champion St. Louis Cardinals.
1997: The Astros are able to win a weak National League Central Division with an average 84-78 record. By the time the postseason rolled around it was clear the Astros were overmatched, as they are swept in a three game NLDS white washing at the hands of the Atlanta Braves.
1998: The Astros acquire Randy Johnson at the trade deadline and run away from the pack in the final two months winning a club record 102 games on the way to their second straight division. Johnson would be unbeatable winning double digits in just months in Houston. However in the NLDS Randy Johnson would lose two pitcher's duels, as the Astros are stunned in four games by the San Diego Padres. Following the season the Astros would also lose the Big Unit to Free Agency.
1999: The Astros bid farewell to the Astrodome in dramatic fashion, clinching their third straight National League Central Divison title with a 97-65 record on the final day of the season before a sold out crowd. Standing-room only crowds were commonplace during the last year of baseball in the Dome as a record 2.7 million fans flocked to the "Eighth Wonder of the World". In the NLDS the Astros take the first game against the Braves in Atlanta. After the Braves won Game 2 the series shifted to Houston, where the Astros let a bases loaded- no-out opportunity slip through their fingers in the ninth Inning, before the Braves won in extra innings. The deflated Astros would not recover losing the series on the next day in the final baseball game at The Astrodome.
2000: The new state of the art Enron Field opens up as an Astros record 3,056,139 fans passed through the turnstiles. However, the Astros would struggle with their new surroundings, as Enron Field was a polar opposite of The Astrodome. Where in the past the Astrodome was a pitcher friendly stadium, the new Enron Field was a home run haven. The Astros would suffer through a miserable first half as their pitchers were victimized by the longball. The season would go from bad to worse when 2B Craig Biggio suffered a knee injury at the start of August. The Astros would go on to finish with a terrible 72-90 record in fourth Place. However, not all was lost as Jeff Bagwell benefited for Enron by smashing a team record 47 home runs.
2001: The Astros rebound nicely, and surge to the front of the National League Central at the end of August, and establish a six game lead. However the Astros would struggle down the stretch, and would enter a three game series in St. Louis against the Cardinals with division o n the line. However, the series would lose importance as the San Francisco Giants lost on Friday Night assuring the loser of the series the Wild Card Spot. None-the less the Astros take two of three games to end up in a tie for first place with a 93-69. However, winning that last game would prove important since it gave the Astros the tiebreaker and the number one seed in the playoffs. In the NLDS the Astros would face the Atlanta Braves for the third time in five years. The Astros would hold a lead in Game 1, but their bullpen could not hold it as the Braves would go on to foil the Astros again sweeping them in three straight games. Following the season manager Larry Dierker who guided the Astros to four division titles in five years resigns, as all four trips ended with a loss in the Division Series. In those four trips the Astros hold a woeful 2-12 record in 14 games.
2002: The Astros get off to a slow start as their young pitching staff suffers early season growing pains. However, outfielder Lance Berkman would have a breakout year with 42 home runs, and 128 RBI, as the Astros had a strong second half to finish in second place with a record of 84-78. Following the season the Astros would strengthen their lineup by signing Free Agent Jeff Kent.
2003: The Astros would get off to a shaky start as Craig Biggio struggled with the transition to Centerfield, as Lance Berkman and Jeff Bagwell sputtered at the plate early in the season. As the weather began to heat up so did the Astros as the rose from a mediocre start to find themselves in the thick of a three team race for the National League Central Division Title. On June 11th the Astros made history as six pitchers combined to no hit the New York Yankees. The Astros were forced to use the pen early after start Roy Oswalt was forced out of the game with pulled groin. From there Peter Munro, Kirk Saarloos, Brad Lidge, Octavio Dotel, and Billy Wagner each pitched in to keep the Yankees hitless. However over the next few weeks the Astros would miss Oswalt as the struggled badly over the next few weeks. As the season wore on the Astros continued to battle the Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals for the division title. As September began the Astros and Cubs would pull away from the Cardinals, but the Cardinals would hurt the Astros taking two of three games in the next to last weekend of the season. Those losses would send the Astros reeling as they lost six of their last nine games including two home losses to the last place Milwaukee Brewers dropping them one game out of first place with a record of 87-75. Following the season the Astros would sign Houston natives Andy Pettitte and Roger Clemens who won a combined 38 games with the Yankees in 2003.
2004: Heading into the season the Astros were one of the top contenders for the World Series in the National League. However, Andy Pettitte would suffer an elbow injury in his first start and it would effect him the entire season as he spent most of the season on the Disabled List posting a 6-4 record in just 15 starts. However Roger Clemens would not disappoint as he was dominant for the start of the season winning his first 9 decisions on the way to a 18-4 record with a 2.98 ERA and 218 strike outs, passing Steve Carlton for second on the career strike out list on the way to winning his record 7th Cy Young. Despite the greatness of Clemens the Astros started struggling in mid May after getting off to a solid 21-11 start. After winning 21 games in their first 32 games they would win just 23 of their next 56 games. Hoping to jump start things the Astros would trade struggling outfielder Richard Hidalgo to the New York Mets while acquiring Carlos Beltran in a three team deal from the Kansas City Royals. Houston was the center of the Baseball world for the All-Star Game with their hometown hero Roger Clemens was on the mound to start the game for the NL. Meanwhile Astros Manager Jimy Williams a coach on the team got a less then warm reaction from the fans at Minute Maid Park who booed him during pre game introductions. A day after the game with the Astros record at 44-44 Williams would be fired and replaced by Phil Garner. Under Garner the Astros continued to struggle over the next month as they fell below .500 and seemingly out of contention with a 56-60 on August 14th. Slowly the Astros would begin to play better as Beltran began to become accustomed to the National League pitching. As September began the Astros were on fire in the middle of a 12-game winning streak as the Astros won 22 of 26 games to become a late entrant into the race for the Wild Card. Down the stretch the Astros were even hotter winning nine of their last ten including their final seven games to capture the Wild Card berth by one game over the San Francisco Giants with a record of 92-70. Entering their eighth playoff appearance the Astros were still without a playoff series victory as they faced the Atlanta Braves who had beaten them in 1997, 1999, and 2001. The Astros would get off to a good start as they took Game 1 on the road behind Roger Clemens 9-3, with Carlos Beltran providing the offense going 3-for-3 with a homer and three runs scored. After losing Game 2 in the 11th inning on a two run homer by Rafael Furcal 4-2, the Astros rebounded to win Game 3 in Houston behind the pitching of Brandon Backe and the continued hot hitting of Beltran who hit his second homer of the series in an 8-5 win. With a chance to close the series out at home the Astros let a 5-2 lead slip out of their fingers as the Braves won to force a decisive fifth game in Atlanta. Playing with heavy heart in Game 5 were Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell who were mourning the death of former teammate Ken Caminiti who died of a drug induced heart attacked in a run down part of New York. Both would play well in Game 5 as Bagwell homered, but the star of the game was once again Beltran who went 4-for-5 with two homers and five RBI as the Astros won the fifth game going away 12-3. In the NLCS the Astros faced the St. Louis Cardinals who had run away with the National League Central. Beltran would stay hot in the NLCS homering in the first inning of the first two games. However the Astros lost both and needed a strong performance from Roger Clemens in Game 3 in Houston just to stay alive. Which, they would get as they won 5-2 with Beltran homering again. In Game 4 the Astros fell behind early as the Cardinals scored three times in the first inning. However another amazing game by Carlos Beltran would see the Astros rally to win 6-5 to even the series as the star outfielder hit a homer for a postseason record fifth straight game while scoring 3 times. Beltran's bat would be kept quiet in Game 5, so were the other 17 hitters on both teams and starting pitchers Brandon Backe and Woody Williams allowed just one hit each. By the ninth inning both starters were gone when Beltran led off with a single off Jason Isringhausen then stole second. The steal forced the Cardinals to walk Lance Berkman to set up for the double play, but it would never come into play as Jeff Kent launched a three run homer to give the Astros a dramatic 3-0 win and 3-2 series lead. With a chance to close the series out in Game 6 the Astros tied the game in ninth inning to force extra innings. However the Cards would win in the 12th inning 6-4 on a Jim Edmonds homer. In Game 7 the Astros would get off to a 2-0 lead as Roger Clemens tried to pitch them to the World Series. However Clemens would tire in the sixth inning as the Cardinals scored three runs on the way to a 5-2 win. The Astros heartbreak would get worse in the off-season as the lost postseason hero Carlos Beltran in a free agent bidding war with the New York Mets, while Jeff Kent left to play with his hometown Los Angeles Dodgers.
2005: With the loss of Beltran and Kent, along with Lance Berkman starting the year on the Disabled List with a knee injury suffered in an off-season basketball game the Astros offense started the year sputtering, as Jeff Bagwell's ailing shoulder led to him playing in just 39 games. Nobody was hurt more by this lack of offense early in the season then Roger Clemens who through the first two months had a 3-3 record despite a 1.54 ERA, as the Astros got off to a terrible 15-30 start. However as June began and Berkman returned the Astros offense began to improve slightly and with a dominate starting pitching staff they were able to quickly turn things around, winning 29 of their next 42 games to climb above .500 at the All-Star Break. The Astros would continue their turnaround in the second half as they were able to capture the Wild Card for the second straight year with an 89-73 record, as Roy Oswalt posted a 20-12 record, while Clemens despite continued poor run support had another solid season at 13-8, with a league best 1.87 ERA. Once again the Astros faced the Atlanta Braves in the NLDS, and got off to a quick start winning Game 1 in Atlanta 10-5, as Lance Berkman drove in five runs. After Clemens struggled in Game 2 the series shifted to Houston, where Roy Oswalt led the way in a 7-3 win. With a chance to close the series out in Game 4 the Astros fell behind early and trailed 6-1 in the eighth Inning. However, a grand slam by Berkman in the eighth gave the Astros life, while Brad Ausmus tied the game in the ninth Inning. From there neither team could scratch the scoreboard as the game became the longest in postseason history at 18 innings, with Roger Clemens coming into pitch the last three innings and get the win as Chris Burke ended it with a walk off homer, sending the Astros to a NLCS rematch with the St. Louis Cardinals. After dropping Game 1 in St. Louis 10-5, the Astros rebounded to take Game 2, behind the pitching of Roy Oswalt 4-1. As the series shifted to Houston the Astros turned to Roger Clemens who got the win 4-3, to give the Astros a series lead a lead they would use a little luck to grow to 3-1 after winning 2-1 thanks to a dramatic play at the plate and double play to prevent the tying run from scoring in the ninth inning. With a chance to make their first ever World Series the Astros grabbed a 4-2 lead on 3-run 7th Inning homer by Berkman. However, with twoouts in the ninth Inning an all of Houston ready to celebrate the usually reliable close Brad Lidge gave up a dramatic three run home run to Albert Pujols, as the Cardinals won 5-4. Back in St. Louis in the same situation up 3-2 as the year before the Astros looked to Roy Oswalt to avoid another let down. Oswalt would go out and shut down the Cardinals allowing just one run on three hits in seven innings to earn NLCS MVP honors as the Astros finally landed in the World Series with a 5-1 win. Facing the Chicago White Sox a team with its own history of postseason frustration the Astros became the first Texas team to play in the World Series. Game 1 would end up being a rough start for Roger Clemens who lasted just two innings as the Astros fell 5-3. Game 2 would not go much better as the game went back and forth with the Sox leading 6-4 in the 9th, before Jose Vizacaino toed the game with a two run single. However it was a short lived reprieve for the Astros as Brad Lidge surrendered a walk off homer to light hitting Scott Podesdnik as the Sox took a 2-0 series lead. As the series shifted to Houston the Astros hoped they could turn things around and after taking a 4-0 lead look like they were on their way. However, the Sox exploded for five runs in the fifth Inning, to take the lead. The Astros would rally to tie the game as Houston fans were treated to another marathon that went a World Series record 14 innings; before former Astro Geoff Blum broke the tie with a homer as the Sox took a 3-0 series lead with a 7-5 win. Game 4 would be a pitching duel between Brandon Backe and Freddy Garcia, as no team could score through the first seven innings. Looking to get on the board Backe would be pitch hit for by Jeff Bagwell who grounded out to second. The Astros would bring in the struggling Brad Lidge to replace Backe, and pitched poorly again giving up a run scoring double to Jermaine Dye. The Astros would not be able to comeback as the White Sox won their first World Series since 88 years 1-0.
2006: While Roger Clemens waited until June to decide weather or not to play another season, and Jeff Bagwell was unable to play ever again due to an arthritic right shoulder the Astros got off to a surprisingly strong start winning 15 of their first 21 games. However, in May the Astros problems would catch up with them as they posted an 11-19 record. Making matters worse, Closer Brad Lidge's postseason struggles carried over as he struggled all season posting a 5.28 ERA. In June Clemens would return as the Astros slipped below .500, meaning they would need another second half comeback to reach the playoffs again. To try an spark a struggling lineup the Astros acquired Aubrey Huff from the Tampa Bay Devil Rays just after the All-Star Break. In his first game with the Astros Huff paid immediate dividends hitting a three run homer as the Astros beat the Florida Marlins 5-1. However, they continued to struggles as they appeared to be going down quietly as they were eight and half games out of first with 12 games to play, and the Wild Card even further out of reach. Then suddenly the magic of the last two seasons past came alive as the Astros went on a nine game winning streak propelling themselves over .500 and with in a half game of the suddenly struggling St. Louis Cardinals. Still needing to win their last three games in Atlanta the Astros ship ran out of fuel as they dropped two of three to the Braves and fell a game and half short with a record of 82-80.
2007: The Astros added some offensive punch by signing Free Agent outfielder Carlos Lee, but lost some pitching as both Andy Pettitte and Roger Clemens returned to the New York Yankees. Early on it was clear the Astros missed their two key starters as they got off to a slow start, as they ended April in last place with a record of 10-14. In May things got bleaker as the Astros endured a ten game losing streak that buried deep in the back of the pack in the National League Central Division. While individual players like Rookie Hunter Pence who led all National League rookies in batting average .322 and triples gave Astros fans something to cheer about the team was otherwise dreadful, as the farewell tour for Craig Biggio became the focal point in the second half. However, before ending a 20-year career spent entirely in Houston Biggio would collect his 3,000th hit in dramatic fashion tying the game in the ninth Inning off the Colorado Rockies Aaron Cook. The Astros would later win that game on a towering grand slam by Carlos Lee. In August the Astros would part ways with Manager Phil Garner replacing him with Cecil Cooper as they would go on to finish in fourth place with a record of 73-89.
2008: The Astros entered the season without high expectations, as they began life without Craig Biggio. Through July the Astros were inline with those who doubted them, as they sat in fourth place with a record of 50-57. However, out of nowhere the Astros skyrocket in the National League Central, as they won 21 of 30 games to get back into the wildcard race. The Astros would stay hot into September as they won nine of their first ten games, and 14 of 15 overall dating back to the end of August. Highlighting this winning streak was an impressive three game sweep of the first place Chicago Cubs in Wrigley Field. On September 11th the Astros sat just three games behind the Milwaukee Brewers for the lead in the Wild Card race with an 80-67 record. However, as the Cubs were scheduled to come to Houston, Eastern Texas was hit by Hurricane Ike, which had caused major damage through the City of Houston. After the first two games were rained out, the series was moved to Miller Park in Milwaukee; where the obviously distracted Astros were no hit by Carlos Zambrano in a 5-0 loss. A day later they were nearly no hit again, scratching out just one hit in a 6-1 loss to the Cubs, in another home game played in Milwaukee. The Astros would not recover as they limped home with an 86-75 record that landed them in third place. Individual accomplishments include 100 RBI seasons from Lance Berkman and Carlos Lee.
2009: After contending for the Wild Card a season before, the Astros stubbed their toe right from the start of the season losing six of their first seven games, as they ended in April in last place with a record of 9-13. Things would not improve much in May as the Astros continued to linger at the bottom of the National League Central Division, while posting an 11-16 record. As June arrived the Astros began to show signs of improvement as they posted a winning record over the next two months, climbing above .500 and within one game of first place. However, in August it would all come crashing down as the Astros returned to the baseball that had them in hole early in the season, as they entered September out of contention with a 63-68 record and 13 and half games out of first place. The Astros would close the season playing horrible baseball as they won just ten games in September on the way to finishing in fifth place with a disappointing record of 74-88. As the season was coming to a close, the Astros decided to make a change, firing Manager Cecil Cooper, with third base coach Dave Clark running the team over the final two weeks of the season.
2010: It was a year of transition under new Manager Brad Mills, as several Astros veterans were on the trading block as the team looked to getting younger for the future. The season started out poorly for Mills and the Astros as they lost their first eight games, on the way to posting an 8-14 record in April. Things would not get much better in May, as the Astros posted a 9-20 record and entered June in last place with a record of 17-34. As June began the Astros started to play better baseball, winning eight of ten games. However, they would struggle in interleague play, particularly against the Texas Rangers, who they lost five of six games to. In July, despite posting a 13-11 record for the month the Astros were one of the biggest sellers at the trade deadline sending Lance Berkman, the last of the Killer Bees to the New York Yankees for minor leaguers Jimmy Paredes and Mark Melancon. While their top pitcher Roy Oswalt was shipped to the Philadelphia Phillies for Pitcher J. A. Happ and two minor league players. Happ, who finished second in Rookie of the Year voting in 2009 pitched well with the Astros, posting a record of 5-4. August would be a good month for the Astros as they began with a season high seven game winning streak, and completed a four game sweep of the Phillies on the road, while as they posted a 17-12 record. The Astros continued to play well in the role of spoiler, as they climbed into third place and to within four game of .500 on September 20th. However, they could not keep the momentum into the final two weeks of the season, as they posted a 3-9 record down the stretch on the way to ending the year in fourth place with a record of 76-86.
2011: Right from the start of the season it was easy to see the Houston had a problem as the Astros, whose farm system was left bare were clearly in a rebuild mode. Meanwhile the team was put up for sale by longtime Owner Drayton McLane. Starting the season on the road, the Astros would be swept by the Philadelphia Phillies, losing to Roy Oswalt in the season finale. The Astros would drop their next two games to the Cincinnati Reds, before winning in their sixth game of the season. The Astros would also drop their first two games at home against the Florida Marlins, as lost eight of their first ten games. The Astros would finish April with a 10-17 record. The Astros would not play much better in May, as they found themselves in last place at 21-34. Over the next two months the Astros continued to struggle winning just 14 games as they held an atrocious 35-73 at the non-waiver trade deadline. Once again the Astros would be sellers at the deadline, dealing Michael Bourne who was on his way to leading the National League in steals to the Atlanta Braves and Hunter Pence to the Philadelphia Phillies for prospects. The month of August was the Astros strongest month as they posted a 12-17 record, and posted two separate four game winning streaks, their longest streaks of the season. The Astros would reach 100 losses for the first time in franchise history with a 2-1 loss against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on September 17th. They would go on to finish the season with a record of 56-106, which was the worst record in baseball. Following the season the Astros would be sold to Jim Crane, who agreed to move the Astros to the American League West for the 2013 season.
2012: In their final National League season, the Astros celebrated their 50th Anniversary as they wore some of their classic uniforms in the past while planning a complete image overhaul for the 2013 season when they moved to the American League. The Astros were also in need of an overhaul on the field as they were coming off their first 100 loss season. The Astros played hard early in the season, winning three of their first four games, as they were around the .500 mark up until Memorial Day weekend with a record of 22-23. However, an eight game losing streak would end any hopes the Astros had of staying competitive. In June the Astros would begin attempts to reduce payroll and go with younger players as they attempted to deal Carlos Lee to the Los Angeles Dodgers. However, Lee would reject to waive his no trade clause, eventually Lee would be dealt to the Miami Marlins for prospect Rob Rasmussen and Matt Dominguez. It would not be the last trade the Astros would make as they stood on June 27th with a record of 32-43, which included an embarrassing 10-0 loss to the San Francisco Giants, in which they had 14 strikeouts as Matt Cain tossed a Perfect Game on June 13th. Over the next two months the Astros would endure one of the worst stretches in the history of baseball, with an awful 8-49 record over a 57 game stretch. As the trade deadline approached, the Astros would nearly gut their entire team as J.A. Happ and Brandon Lyon were sent to the Toronto Blue Jays. Brett Meyers was sent to the Chicago White Sox and Wandy Rodriguez was sent to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Astros would also make a managerial change as Brad Mills was fired and replaced by Tony DeFrancesco on an interim basis for the remainder of the season. During the first 34 games of the awful stretch, the Astros failed to win two straight games at any point, winning just three overall as they suffered through an embarrassing 3-24 record in July, which included a 12 game losing streak and play in the field that resembled the Bad News Bears. The Astros would play slightly better down the stretch, splitting their final 30 games, as they suffered their second straight 100 -loss season with a franchise worst record of 55-107, suffering a 5-4 loss to the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field in their final National League Game.
2013: Moving to the American League West, the Astros now managed by Bo Porter went back to the past returning to the classic NASA like blue and orange color scheme as they brought back the classic blue caps with a white H imposed on an orange star. In their first American League Game against the Lone Star State rival Texas Rangers, the Astros won 8-2 at Minute Maid Park, as Rick Ankiel broken the game open with a three run home run. However, two days later the Astros would not reach base until the ninth inning as Marwin Gonzalez two out singled ended Yu Darvish's big for a Perfect Game as the Rangers won the game 7-0. Despite their Opening Night win, the Astros would be dominated in the Lone Star State showdown, as the Rangers won 17 of 19 in their first season as division rivals. After winning their opener, the Astros dropped their next six games, as they ended their first month in the American League with a record of 8-19. Things would not get much better in May, as the Astros lost 11 of their first 13 games, and sat in last place with a record of 10-30 through the first quarter of the season. As May turned into June, the Astros had their best stretch of the season as they won six straight on the road against the Colorado Rockies and Los Angeles Angels. June, would be the Astros best month as they were somewhat competitive posting a record of 12-15. However, the long hot summer would separate the pretenders from contenders and the Astros were shown to be the former as they only won six games and ended the month on track to lose 100 games again at 36-70. They would not do much better in August, posting a record of 8-21. Starting September at 44-91, the Astros looked determined to finish the season as strong as possible as they posted a 7-5 mark, highlighted by a three game sweep of the Seattle Mariners on the road. However, with two weeks left in the season the Astros suddenly went ice cold, losing their final 15 games. For the third straight year the Astros would set a new franchise record for most losses in a season, this time around posting an atrocious record of 51-111, as their three year stretch of 162-324 was the worst in 50 years. In a season in which the Astros ranked among the worst teams in hitting and pitching few players could be spotlighted as positive. Chris Carter (23) and Matt Dominguez (21) were the only Astros to top 20 homers, while no starters had a winning record as Jordan Lyles led the team with a 7-9 record.
2014: Coming off three consecutive 100-loss seasons the Houston Astros had no place to go but up. Facing the New York Yankees to start the season, the Astros losing streak ended with a 6-2 win at Minute Maid Park on Opening Day, with Scott Feldman getting the win. The Astros would also earn a 3-1 win over the Yankees in the second game of the seasons. However, wins would still be rather scarce for Houston, as they posted a 5-14 record over their first 19 games. May would see the Astros show signs of improvement, as they had a winning record at 15-14, highlighted by a seven game winning streak. Helping the Astros cause was Dallas Kuechle who won six of his first eight decisions. Kuechle would finish the season with a record of 12-9 with a solid ERA of 2.93. Shortstop Jose Altuve, would emerge as the team's new star as he became the first Astros player to winning a batting title, leading the majors in hitting with a .341 average. Altuve's 56 stolen bases also led the American League, while adding 47 doubles, seven home runs, and 59 RBI. George Springer, one of Houston's top prospects also gave the Astros a boost after making his Major League Debut April 16th. Springer would hit his 15th home run on June 26th breaking a franchise record for home runs by a rookie at the All-Star Break. George Springer would be hampered by injuries in the second half and finished the season with 20 long balls, 51 RBI and a .230 average. Springer was the first of what the Astros hoped would become a long line of prospects to begin making their mark in Houston. One player that would not be a part of the Astros plans was Brady Aiken, who was the third straight number one overall pick for the Astros. However, a contract could not be reached by the deadline, and the Astros became the first team in 31 years to fail to sign the top overall pick. With the struggles of the Texas Rangers, the Astros were able to climb out of last place. The Astros would post a winning record again in August at 15-14 as they won two of three on the road against the New York Yankees. Despite the signs of improvement, the Astros would terminate the contract of Manager Bo Porter on September 1st. Tom Lawless would manager the Astros the remainder of the season, posting a record of 11-13. The Astros would finish the year with a record of 70-92, good enough for fourth place in the American League West.
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