This Day In Astros History: June 22, 1962

This one is pretty good. On this day, back from the early days in the Houston franchise, pitcher Jim Golden set a pretty interesting record as the Colt .45's beat the Mets 16-3 at the Polo Grounds.

Golden has the distinction of being the only pitcher in team history to hit two triples in the same game. When I originally looked up this date for this feature, I didn't realize it happened in the Polo Grounds. Seeing that fact in the box score, coupled with this being the second game of a doubleheader explains this one so much more.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Polo Grounds, it looked like this: 

Polo_grounds_dia_medium

via www.ballparktour.com

Those are just some crazy dimensions, both down the lines and to the power allies. Golden's first hit was categorized as going to center field, which was clarified to left-center in the parenthetical statement afterwards. If said hit got over the center fielder's head, who might have been playing more shallowly for the pitcher, it might have rolled and rolled and rolled. The same can be said of his second triple to right field. If it got past Hall of Famer Richie Ashburn in his final season in right, he could also have run for a while.

What's also wild is that Golden picked up another hit with a single in this one, drove in two runs and scored on all three trips around the bases. Since Golden really didn't get but this one season as a regular starter, this game accounted for three of his 13 career hits. The rest of the team did well, too, as four different Colt players hit home runs (all to either right or left field). 

Golden did pretty well on the bump, too, pitching a complete game for his fifth victory of that season. He allowed seven hits, three runs, four walks and seven strikeouts, beating Mets starter Bob Miller.

The Mets only played in the Polo Grounds (the former home of the New York Giants) for two seasons before Shea Stadium opened in 1964. With its cozier dimensions, I have no doubt Mr. Golden would have had much more trouble hitting triples there.

Here's a graphic replay of the game, thanks to Back to Baseball.

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