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The Houston Astros are a professional baseball team located in Houston, Texas. The team is a member of the Western Division of Major League Baseball's American League, having moved to the division in 2013 after spending their first 51 seasons in the National League. The Astros have played their home games at Minute Maid Park since 2000.
The Astros were established as the Houston Colt .45s in 1962. The current name was adopted three years later when they moved into the Astrodome, the world's first domed sports stadium. The name reflects Houston's role as the center of the U.S. Space Program.
The Astros (89–73) have made one World Series appearance (while a member of the National League), in 2005 against the Chicago White Sox (99-63), in which they were swept in 4 games.
From 1888 until 1961, Houston's professional baseball club was the minor league Houston Buffaloes. Although expansion from the National League eventually brought a Major League team to Texas in 1962, Houston officials had been making efforts to do so for years prior. There were four men chiefly responsible for bringing Major League Baseball to Houston: George Kirksey and Craig Cullinan, who had led a futile attempt to purchase the St. Louis Cardinals in 1952; R.E. "Bob" Smith, a prominent oilman and real estate magnate in Houston who was brought in for his financial resources; and Judge Roy Hofheinz, a former Mayor of Houston and Harris County Judge who was recruited for his salesmanship and political style. They formed the Houston Sports Association as their vehicle for attaining a big league franchise for the city of Houston.
Given MLB's refusal to consider expansion, Kirksey, Cullinan, Smith, and Hofheinz joined forces with would-be owners from other cities and announced the formation of a new league to compete with the established National and American Leagues.