Terry Collins

From BR Bullpen

Terry Lee Collins

BR Manager page

Biographical Information[edit]

Terry Collins was drafted in the 19th round of the 1971 amateur draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates. An infielder, he played in the minors throughout the 1970s, reaching AAA and spending six years at that level. Prior to entering the draft, Collins led the Eastern Michigan Hurons in steals for each of his four seasons with the team between 1968 and 1971 and as a shortstop helped lead the team to the 1970 NAIA national title. Collins took home the Outstanding Defensive Player title from the NAIA tournament. He was elected into the EMU Athletic Hall of Fame in 1994.

After retiring as a player, Collins was a minor league manager for 11 years before joining the Pittsburgh Pirates as a coach in 1992 and 1993. He served as the Houston Astros manager from 1994 to 1996. He then moved to the Anaheim Angels as skipper in 1997 and held that job for three years, until 1999. In both cities, he regularly brought his club into second place, but never managed to reach the postseason. Collins was a major league advance scout for the Chicago Cubs in 2000. He then spent 2001 as a member of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays coaching staff.

After the 2006 season, Collins, then farm director for the Los Angeles Dodgers, became manager of the Orix Buffaloes of Japan's Pacific League. He retired from that role in May of 2008, saying he lacked the "fire" needed, and was replaced by Daijiro Ohishi.

Collins replaced Jim Lefebvre as manager of the Chinese national team between the 2008 Olympics and 2009 World Baseball Classic. He guided China to a 1-2 record in the 2009 WBC, including their second win ever over the Taiwan national team. At the end of that season he was hired by the New York Mets to be their minor league field coordinator, then was chosen to succeed Jerry Manuel as the team's manager in 2011.

It took a while for the Mets to become relevant under Collins' leadership, as they sputtered to 4th-place finishes in both 2011 and 2012, then followed that with a 3rd-place finish in 2013, even though their record was the same as the previous year, and worse than in Collins' first year at the helm. The Mets were not a particularly entertaining team in those years, until the arrival of young pitchers Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler began to create excitement the third season. In 2014, the Mets showed some improvement, as a solid second half led them to finish in second place in the NL East, tied with the Atlanta Braves, although still below .500.

New York headed into the 2015 season with relatively low expectations, although observers noted that they now had a wealth of young pitching, with Jacob deGrom having just been named the NL Rookie of the Year, Harvey coming back from Tommy John surgery, and a couple of top prospects, Noah Syndergaard and Steven Matz, in the pipeline. Largely riding that good pitching, they were able to stay around .500 and within sight of the heavily-favored Washington Nationals in the first half, and then caught fire in the second half after some inspired deals at the trading deadline, including the acquisition of power-hitting OF Yoenis Cespedes and the promotion of young OF Michael Conforto. They soon caught and passed the Nationals, leaving them well in their dust as they won the division title with 90 wins. Collins then decided to use his four young starting pitchers exclusively during the postseason, relegating veterans Bartolo Colon and Jonathon Niese to the bullpen, and the strategy worked as they disposed of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the Division Series and then swept the Chicago Cubs in the NLCS. Collins seemed to lose his magic touch in the World Series, however. Facing the Kansas City Royals, a team of free swingers whose hitters were very hard to strike out, negating one of his starting pitchers' main strengths, he made a number of questionable bullpen moves that saw closer Jeurys Familia, who had been impeccable until then, blow three save opportunities - albeit two of them when he came into the game after the situation had degenerated almost beyond repair. The Royals came from behind in all four games they won, including three times in the 8th or 9th inning, to win the Series in five games. A particular point of contention was his decision to have Matt Harvey start the 9th inning of Game 5 with a 1-0 lead, instead of calling on Familia immediately, a decision that proved ill-fated. Still, the Mets rewarded him for the team's great season by extending his contract through 2017. ` In 2016, the Mets were wracked by injuries but still managed to rally down the stretch, with a patched-together starting rotation, to win the right to host the Wild Card Game at Citi Field. Collins was widely praised for his work in keeping the team focused through the rough patches. The Wild Card Game was the stage of a superb pitchers' duel between Syndergaard and the San Francisco Giants' Madison Bumgarner, which ended in the Giants' favor after Collins had to pull a tired Syndergaard after seven brilliant innings. Familia gave up a game-winning homer to Conor Gillaspie in the 9th and the Mets lost, 3-0, ending their season. Everything then went wrong in 2017, with injuries, dissension, and plain weirdness sinking the season from its very start. There were calls from fans for the team to dump Collins in favor of a younger manager, but they were not heeded by the top brass, while for his part, Collins stated that he wanted to stay for another season. However, after the Mets played their final game of the season on October 1st, he announced he was stepping down and would assume a role in the front office.

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • NL Pennant: 1 (2015)
  • Division Title: 1 (2015)
  • Other Postseason Appearance: 1 (2016 - Wild Card)

Preceded by
Art Howe
Houston Astros Manager
Succeeded by
Larry Dierker
Preceded by
Joe Maddon
Anaheim Angels Manager
Succeeded by
Joe Maddon
Preceded by
Jerry Manuel
New York Mets Manager
Succeeded by
Mickey Callaway

Year-By-Year Managerial Record[edit]

Year Team League Record Finish Organization Playoffs Notes
1981 Lodi Dodgers California League 73-67 3rd Los Angeles Dodgers League Champs
1982 Vero Beach Dodgers Florida State League 79-53 2nd Los Angeles Dodgers Lost in 1st round Stan Wasiak (1-0) managed 1 game
1983 San Antonio Dodgers Texas League 36-38 -- Los Angeles Dodgers replaced by Rick Ollar & Dave Wallace on June 19
Albuquerque Dukes Pacific Coast League 42-26 2nd Los Angeles Dodgers Lost League Finals replaced Del Crandall (43-32) on June 29
1984 Albuquerque Dukes Pacific Coast League 62-81 10th Los Angeles Dodgers
1985 Albuquerque Dukes Pacific Coast League 67-76 6th Los Angeles Dodgers
1986 Albuquerque Dukes Pacific Coast League 54-88 10th Los Angeles Dodgers
1987 Albuquerque Dukes Pacific Coast League 77-65 3rd Los Angeles Dodgers League Champs
1988 Albuquerque Dukes Pacific Coast League 86-56 1st Los Angeles Dodgers Lost in 1st round
1989 Buffalo Bisons American Association 80-62 2nd Pittsburgh Pirates
1990 Buffalo Bisons American Association 85-62 3rd Pittsburgh Pirates
1991 Buffalo Bisons American Association 81-62 1st Pittsburgh Pirates Lost League Finals
1994 Houston Astros National League 66-49 2nd Houston Astros
1995 Houston Astros National League 76-68 2nd Houston Astros
1996 Houston Astros National League 82-80 2nd Houston Astros
1997 Anaheim Angels American League 84-78 2nd Anaheim Angels
1998 Anaheim Angels American League 85-77 2nd Anaheim Angels
1999 Anaheim Angels American League 51-82 -- Anaheim Angels replaced by Joe Maddon on September 3
2007 Orix Buffaloes Pacific League 62-77-5 6th Nippon Pro Baseball
2008 Orix Buffaloes Pacific League 21-28 -- Nippon Pro Baseball -- replaced by Daijiro Ohishi on May 21
2011 New York Mets National League 77-85 4th New York Mets
2012 New York Mets National League 74-88 4th New York Mets
2013 New York Mets National League 74-88 3rd New York Mets
2014 New York Mets National League 79-83 2nd (t) New York Mets
2015 New York Mets National League 90-72 1st New York Mets Lost World Series
2016 New York Mets National League 87-75 2nd New York Mets Lost Wild Card Game
2017 New York Mets National League 70-92 4th New York Mets

Further Reading[edit]

  • Marc Carig: "Terry Collins: Mets manager is relaxed and rewarded", Newsday, October 9, 2015. [1]
  • Matt Ehalt: "Collins says he has no retirement plans, prefers to stay with the Mets", USA Today Sports, September 26, 2017. [2]
  • Joe Lemire: "Mets manager Terry Collins second guesses decision to keep Matt Harvey in Game 5", USA Today Sports, November 2, 2015. [3]
  • Bob Nightengale: "Terry Collins opens up on Mets' World Series fallout: 'Shocking how disappointed I was'", USA Today Sports, February 17, 2016. [4]

Related Sites[edit]