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The National League expanded to ten teams in 1962 with new franchises in Houston (Colt .45s) and New York (Mets). Each team would play 18 games against the other nine teams for a 162 game schedule. The new teams’ rosters were picked from a list provided by the other teams who, for obvious reasons, were not likely to make their better players available. So it was no surprise that the new teams were not very good. But who knew they would be that bad? The New York Mets lost 120 games and the Houston Colt .45s lost 96. Seven teams finished with a better than .500 record because of the ineptitude of the new teams. The Phillies were all over Houston, winning 17 of the 18 games between them. The Phils were 14-4 against the Mets. Thus, for the season, the Phillies were 31-5 versus the new guys, and 50-75 against the rest of the league; they were 4-14 against the winning LA Dodgers. So it was a plus .500 season for Gene Mauch’s Phillies, but 20 games behind the leader.

The early returns on the Phillies were encouraging – Art Mahaffey was pitching well, Johnny Callison, Tony Gonzalez, Don Demeter, and Roy Sievers were hitting, and new shortstop, Bobby Wine was a defensive standout with only eight errors in 87 games.

On May 11, after a 12-2 win in Chicago, the team was at 13-11 and looking for more. What they got was 17 losses in the next 20 games including a seven game losing streak from May 24 to 30, leaving them at 16-28, and down for the count.

By max blue
 
 
Tagged:
Art Mahaffey, Bobby Wine, Don Demeter, Expansion of 1961, Houston Colt .45's, Johnny Callison, New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, Roy Sievers, Tony Gonzalez

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