Terry Collins will be the new manager of the New York Mets after serving as the Mets Field Coordinator in 2010. I like the hire.
Last year, Omar Minaya coaxed Collins out of retirement to run the Mets farm system. Following the Tony Bernazard debacle, Omar told Collins he needed him. Collins, obviously accepted. Although he wore the title of Field Coordinator, he was more like a Super-Field Coordinator with many of the baseball related duties of someone who would otherwise be called Director of Player Development. Player moves? Collins with input of course from his field staffers and Adam Wogan. On the field, setting the standards for teaching? That was Collins. Administrative duties? Wogan. Phone call from a player’s agent? That went to Wogan. Pure baseball issue? Call TC.
The Field Coordinator’s first show is organizing and running minor league spring training. In 2010, Collins made some changes to the Mets programs from the Bernazard era. The reviews, from players, coaches and coordinators I talked to, were all extremely positive.
Collins is organized, energetic, passionate and knowledgeable. He commanded instant respect. It helped that he wasn’t Tony Bernazard. It helped even more that he knew what he was doing.
During the season, I continued to hear that people were enjoying working for Collins. He was also generous with his time for me and never shied away from answering a question either.
There’s another striking similarity, between Collins and Sandy Alderson: a disdain for mediocrity. I remember talking to Collins in the first half of the 2010 season. I asked him a question about a player, I truly don’t remember who, who wasn’t doing very well. I tip-toed up to the question, but Collins responded with something to the effect that he had no patience for mediocrity anymore. Sound familiar? Alderson, said at his introductory press conference: “As far as the system is concerned right now, I think it’s probably middle of the pack. We should never be in the middle of the pack.”
The other angle to the Collins’ hire is the role of Paul DePodesta. DePodesta almost hired Collins with the Dodgers and clearly was one of Collins’ supporters. Also, with Collins’ departure from the player development side of the operation, DePodesta will now have the opportunity to hire a new Farm Director. Who do you think are the likely candidates?