Terry Collins

Terry Lee Collins (born May 27, 1949) is an American former professional baseball manager. He managed the Houston Astros, the Anaheim Angels and New York Mets in Major League Baseball and the Orix Buffaloes of Nippon Professional Baseball. He currently serves as a baseball analyst for Mets programming on SNY.

Terry Collins
Collins with the New York Mets in 2015
Born: (1949-05-27) May 27, 1949
Midland, Michigan, U.S.
Bats: Left
Throws: Right
MLB statistics
Managerial record995–1017
Winning %.495
As manager

As coach

A former Minor League Baseball shortstop, Collins managed the Albuquerque Dukes of the Pacific Coast League and the Buffalo Bisons of the International League at the minor league level, and the Duluth Huskies of the Northwoods League at the summer collegiate league level. In 1994, he made his MLB managerial debut with the Houston Astros. He also managed the Anaheim Angels for three years. Known as a "feisty and intense manager",[1] Collins had his longest tenure as manager of the New York Mets (his first major league job in a decade), where he led them to their first playoff appearance in nine years in 2015, which resulted in a trip to the 2015 World Series, their first pennant since 2000.

Since retiring from managing, Collins has worked in the Mets' front office as a special assistant to general managers Sandy Alderson (2018) and Brodie Van Wagenen (2019). He also joined Fox Sports as a studio analyst for the network's MLB coverage in 2019.[2]

College career

Collins attended college at Eastern Michigan University from 1968–1971, where he played shortstop. In each of the four years he attended Eastern Michigan, Collins led the team in steals. He was on the Eastern Michigan team that won the NAIA national championship in 1971, at which he won the honor of Outstanding Defensive Player of the Tournament. Collins was inducted into the Eastern Michigan University Athletic Hall of Fame in 1994.

Playing career

In 1971, Collins was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates.[3] During a 10-year playing career, he played from 1970-1978 and in 1980 and 1984 in the Pittsburgh Pirates and Los Angeles Dodgers organizations. However, he never broke into the big leagues.[4] Collins batted left-handed and threw right-handed and stood 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m) tall. He compiled a batting average of .255 in 671 games played.[5]

Managing career


In 1981, Collins began his managing career as pilot of the Dodgers' Class-A Lodi affiliate in the California League. In 1983, he managed the Albuquerque Dukes, the Dodgers' AAA affiliate also in winter to Mayos de Navojoa in the Mexican Pacific League. He managed the Dukes through the 1987 season, in which he won the PCL championship. He also led the Tigres de Licey to a victory in the 1984 Caribbean Series. He managed three years in Buffalo, the Pirates' AAA affiliate, winning 246 games in the process.[6] He was promoted to bullpen coach for the Pirates in 1992, where he coached until the end of the 1993 season.[7][8] In honor of his achievements in Buffalo, he was inducted into the Buffalo Baseball Hall of Fame in 1992.[9] He was also inducted into the Albuquerque Baseball Hall of Fame in 2014.[10]

1994–96: Houston Astros

After the 1993 season, the Houston Astros fired manager Art Howe because the owner did not favor Howe's "deliberate style."[8] Astros General Manager Bob Watson replaced him with Collins,[8] who never had a losing season in his three years there. The Astros finished second all three years.[11]

The 1994 season seemed to be a highlight year for the Astros and Collins. They were 66-49, with a banner year from first basemen Jeff Bagwell, who was batting .368. They were a half game behind in the NL Central, but the 1994 strike complicated both dilemmas of the team: Bagwell had suffered a season-ending injury to his hand on August 10 but the strike that happened two days later meant that the season would not be concluded. Bagwell was the first MVP in Astros history.

The 1995 season was a 144-game season due to the strike lasting many months. The Astros went 76-68, good for a second place finish in the Central behind the Cincinnati Reds. That year, Collins was a coach at the All-Star Game.[12] They never were a particular threat to the Reds, but they were in the hunt for the newly instituted Wild Card until the Colorado Rockies (a third year expansion team) swooped in and won the spot by one game.

The Astros had plenty to talk about in 1996. A feud between pitchers and batters boiled over to the public, while owner Drayton McLane pushed for a new ballpark with a second choice being a move to Virginia.[13] On the field, they led for over a hundred days in 1996, leading as late as September 2, but an 8-17 September doomed their chances (including a road trip where they lost all eight games), and they finished in second place by six games behind the St. Louis Cardinals (incidentally, the Astros went 2-11 against the Cardinals that year). They finished with a record of 82-80.[14] He was dismissed at the end of the 1996 season, after the Astros suffered a late-season collapse.[11] During a 1996 game against the Montreal Expos, Collins was hit in the face by a batting helmet thrown by Expos outfielder Moisés Alou during a brawl. Collins had to receive four stitches to close the wound above his lip.[15] He finished his Astros career with a 224–197 record.[16]

Baseball analyst Joe Morgan suggests that Collins was partly to blame for the Astros failure to make the playoffs.[17] Morgan wrote in 1999:

Adversity is part of baseball; if a manager can't cope with it his team will suffer. Terry Collins, the skipper of the Anaheim Angels learned this lesson when he was with Houston. The Astros were a talented team when Collins was there (1994–96). They finished second three times but failed to make the playoffs because their manager exerted too much pressure on them. He was so uptight, his players thought each pitch was life-or-death. It wasn't anything Terry said; it was his demeanor. Collins was edgy in the dugout during games, always looking like someone who was just waiting for disaster to strike. At the moment anything actually went wrong you could smell the panic in him. Players picked up on that. To alleviate the tension the manager was bringing to the clubhouse, they put added pressure on themselves to perform well, which invariably choked off their natural abilities so that they can't play their best. It's no coincidence that the Astros became a post-season participant once Houston replaced Collins with Larry Dierker. I don't know if Larry knows more about baseball than Collins, but he does have a laid-back attitude that immediately puts his players at ease. Dierker kept the pressure off the team by reminding them that while the goal of winning is serious, the game is still essentially supposed to be fun. (By the way, I have been watching Collins since he joined the Angels and he's a much more laid-back skipper. When I complimented him on this change, he said former Angel infielder-outfielder Tony Phillips had spoken to him about relaxing more and that it has really made an impression.)[17]

Years later, Collins admitted as such that he demanded "probably too much" from his team.

1997–99: Anaheim Angels

Less than a month after being dismissed by the Astros, Collins was hired as manager of the Anaheim Angels for the 1997 season.[11] His first two years with the Angels also produced winning records and second-place finishes. In 1999, the Angels were hampered by injuries and Collins resigned with 29 games left in the season. He apparently received a vote of confidence from the front office, but the players had petitioned GM Bill Bavasi to fire him.[3] He finished his Angels career with a 220–237 record.[16]


At the end of the 2006 season, Collins signed a two-year deal to manage the Orix Buffaloes of the Pacific League in Japan.[3] Terry resigned as manager of the Buffaloes on May 21, 2008, after a 7–3 inter-league loss to the Hanshin Tigers.[3] Orix were in 5th place in the Pacific League with a 21–28 record, despite investments in players such as Alex Cabrera in the prior off-season. Injuries to the Buffaloes pitching staff certainly didn't help Collins' situation. However, the Buffaloes bounced back and finished second by the end of the season.

Collins became the manager of the China national baseball team at the end of the year, in time for the 2009 World Baseball Classic.

On July 20, 2009, the Duluth Huskies of the Northwoods League announced that Collins would manage the team for the rest of the season after firing their field manager a few days prior.[18]

2011–2017: New York Mets

Collins spent the 2010 season as the minor-league field coordinator for the New York Mets organization.[19] Collins was introduced as Mets manager on November 23, 2010, signing a two-year deal.[20]

Collins wore number 10 to honor his managing mentor and friend Jim Leyland of the Detroit Tigers.[7][20] Collins served on Leyland's coaching staff when he was manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1992 and 1993.[7]

On September 27, 2011, the Mets announced they would pick up Collins' option for the 2013 season.[21]

In 2012, after the Mets' 46–40 record at the All-Star Break, St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa selected Collins as one of his coaches to the 2012 All-Star Game in Kansas City. In 2013, San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy selected Collins as one of his coaches at the 2013 All-Star Game which was located at the Mets' ballpark, Citi Field.[22]

At the end of September 2013, Collins agreed to a two-year extension with the Mets with a club option for 2016.[23] When Jim Leyland retired in October 2013, Collins became the oldest active manager in Major League Baseball.[24]

On June 16, 2015, Collins won his 340th game as Mets manager, passing Gil Hodges for the third-most in franchise history.[25] On September 26, 2015, the Mets defeated the Cincinnati Reds 10–2 to clinch the National League East. It was the first time Collins ever clinched a playoff berth as a manager. On October 15, 2015, the Mets defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers to advance to Collins's first-ever National League Championship Series appearance.[26] On October 21, 2015, the Mets defeated the Chicago Cubs to advance to the 2015 World Series versus the Kansas City Royals. On November 2, Collins made the decision to leave starter Matt Harvey in Game 5 for the ninth inning with the Mets holding a 2–0 lead. Harvey gave up two earned runs in the inning to allow the Royals to tie the game and eventually win the Series, leading to questions about Collins's strategy.[27]

In 2015, Collins won the National League Sporting News Manager of the Year Award.[28]

Collins recorded his 468th loss as Mets manager on August 3, 2016 at New Yankee Stadium, making him the losingest manager in Mets history ahead of Bobby Valentine.[29][30][16]

Collins was the subject of a leaked recording from a May 28, 2016 game against the Los Angeles Dodgers in which he was ejected. The video showcased Collins's heated and profanity-laced argument with MLB umpire Tom Hallion after pitcher Noah Syndergaard was ejected for attempting to throw a beanball at Chase Utley. Utley was involved in a controversial slide on Ruben Tejada during the 2015 NLDS, resulting in a broken leg for Tejada. The umpire crew, aware of the history between the two teams, viewed the pitch as retaliation and used that to justify an immediate ejection for Syndergaard, despite not issuing warnings before the game. The recording went viral as it offered an uncensored view into an on-field interaction between an umpire and a manager.[31]

In 2016, despite a record below .500 (60-62) on August 19, the Mets went 27-13 in their final 40 games to make the postseason in consecutive seasons for the second time in franchise history. They subsequently lost to the San Francisco Giants in the Wild Card Game.

Collins with the Mets during spring training in 2017

On May 20, 2017, Collins managed his 1013th game with the Mets, the most in franchise history.[32] On August 25, 2017, Collins won his 537th game with the Mets, making him the second-winningest manager in franchise history behind only Davey Johnson.[33]

Collins retired as manager following the final game of the 2017 season on October 1, 2017. Immediately upon his retirement from the managerial role, Collins was named as a special assistant to the General Manager of the New York Mets.

Managerial record

As of games played on October 1, 2017.
Team From To Regular season record Post–season record
W L Win % W L Win %
Houston Astros 1994 1996 224197.532 DNQ
Anaheim Angels 1997 1999 220237.481 DNQ
New York Mets 2011 2017 551583.486 87.533
Total 9951017.495 87.533


  1. Waldstein, David (November 21, 2010). "Collins Is Mets' Choice for Manager". The New York Times.
  2. "Terry Collins Joins FOX Sports as MLB Studio Analyst". Fox Sports PressPass. May 1, 2019. Retrieved May 25, 2019.
  3. Martino, Andy (November 23, 2010). "Mets manager Terry Collins brings stigma of rough go-round with Angels, but gains players' respect". New York Daily News. Archived from the original on January 21, 2021.
  4. Holtzman, Jerome (October 1994). "'94 Astros Didn't Magically Become Contenders in N.L." Baseball Digest. 53 (10): 32–33. ISSN 0005-609X.
  5. "Terry Collins statistics". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved November 21, 2010.
  6. "Bisons All 25 Seasons' Team". Retrieved August 29, 2012.
  7. Rubin, Adam (December 8, 2010). "Leyland praises Collins". ESPNNewYork.com. Retrieved December 12, 2010.
  8. "Collins Hired By Astros". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. November 18, 1993. p. 6C. Retrieved July 28, 2010.
  9. "Buffalo Baseball Hall of Fame". Retrieved August 29, 2012.
  10. "ABQ Baseball Hall of Fame". MiLB.com. Retrieved January 4, 2018.
  11. Peters, Ken (November 4, 1996). "Angels to Name Terry Collins". McCook Daily Gazette.
  12. "Bochy, Leyland Announce 2013 All-Star Staffs | MLB.com".
  13. "Former Astros manager Collins admits he has grown up". February 28, 2011.
  14. "1996 Houston Astros Schedule".
  15. "Alou, Darwin, Rodriguez, Others Face Suspensions, Fines". AP News. Associated Press. August 13, 1996. Retrieved May 24, 2021.
  16. "Terry Collins". Baseball Reference. Sports Reference. Retrieved December 23, 2014.
  17. Morgan, Joe; Lally, Dick (1999). Long balls, no Strikes: What Baseball Must do to Keep the Good Times Rolling. Random House. ISBN 978-0-609-60524-0.
  18. Press Release. "Huskies Hire Former MLB Manager". KQDS-TV. July 20, 2009. Archived from the original on July 17, 2011.
  19. Costa, Brian (May 30, 2010). "Q&A with Mets minor-league field coordinator Terry Collins". The Star-Ledger.
  20. DiComo, Anthony (November 23, 2010). "Fiery Collins takes over as Mets manager". MLB.com. Mets.MLB.com. Archived from the original on December 8, 2010. Retrieved June 11, 2012. Collins...requested uniform No. 10 in honor of one of his first managerial mentors, Jim Leyland.
  21. Rubin, Adam (September 28, 2011). "Mets pick up option for Terry Collins". ESPNNewYork.com.
  22. "Collins, Johnson on NL All-Star staff". Associated Press. June 12, 2013.
  23. "Mets re-sign Terry Collins for 2 years". ESPN. September 30, 2013.
  24. Puma, Mike (October 21, 2013). "Terry Collins to become MLB's oldest manager". New York Post. Retrieved June 14, 2016.
  25. Tasch, Justin (June 17, 2015). "Mets have bullpen spot waiting for suspended Jenrry Mejia". New York Daily News. Retrieved August 29, 2016.
  26. Rohan, Tim (September 26, 2015). "After Nine-Year Wait, the Mets Are Returning to the Postseason". The New York Times. Retrieved January 3, 2016.
  27. Yahoo Sports
  28. McGuire, Justin (October 27, 2015). "Sporting News MLB awards: Terry Collins, Paul Molitor voted top managers". Sporting News. Retrieved November 18, 2015.
  29. "New York Mets Managers". Baseball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved October 1, 2016.
  30. "2016 New York Mets Schedule and Results". Baseball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved October 1, 2016.
  31. "That viral video of a manager's profane rant? MLB is trying to rid it from the Internet". Washington Post. Retrieved July 25, 2018.
  32. Popper, Daniel (May 20, 2017). "Terry Collins manages 1,013th Mets game, passes Davey Johnson for most in franchise history". New York Daily News. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  33. Collier, Jamal; Shiferaw, Daniel (August 25, 2017). "'Jake' picks up win No. 14, tops Nationals". MLB.com. Major League Baseball. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
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