Clear 48° Good Afternoon
Clear 48° Good Afternoon

Terry Collins doesn't mind having target on Mets' backs in 2016

New York Mets manager Terry Collins speaks at

New York Mets manager Terry Collins speaks at a press conference after general manager Sandy Alderson announced a two-year contract extension for Collins during a press conference at Citi Field on Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2015. Photo Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

Terry Collins is still kicking himself for leaving in Matt Harvey and not bringing in closer Jeurys Familia to start the ninth inning of Game 5 of the World Series.

How do we know? At the news conference to announce the two-year, $3-million contract extension he agreed to on Tuesday, Collins was asked if he would have done anything differently.

"I would have brought in Familia," he said.

Other than that note, Collins was all smiles as he talked about his new job security and the big expectations he has for the Mets over the next two years.

"No longer are we going to sneak up on anybody," he said. "And I love that. I love to walk in that ballpark -- you've got to walk out there with a bit of a swagger that, you know, we're legit, and this wasn't a fluke."

Collins endured the lean years. This year, he got to enjoy success as the Mets made the postseason for the first time since 2006 and the World Series for the first time since 2000.

"Terry did an extraordinary job this year under differing circumstances as time went on," general manager Sandy Alderson said.

"The first part of the season, we had high expectations. We had a high injury rate. Terry kept the team together, kept it competitive, kept our heads above water. Later, as the season wore on, we got some players back from injury, we added some players via trade and he managed that group with those higher expectations extraordinarily well and got us into the World Series. We expected to have a good season. You never expect to be in the World Series.

"But the reason Terry is back as manager is not just because of the season we just had. Over the previous four years, without the talent base, without the resources that he ultimately had at least for part of this season, he did an extraordinary job as well . . . This is an expression of our appreciation and our confidence in Terry going forward."

Alderson, who has been known to bristle at Collins' transparency with the media, praised Collins for his ability to interact with the players.

"Being able to tell the players like it is without jeopardizing or criticizing them directly in public . . . that's a hard line to walk," Alderson said. "But he's been very successful at it and I think that's what the players appreciate, and I think to a large extent the fans appreciate his honesty as well."

Collins, 66, is the oldest manager in baseball. He didn't say if this was going to be his last contract. "One of the things I really thought about during the season was this really would be fun for the next couple years to see how much better these kids can get," Collins said.

"So I was very, very excited I got two years. Sandy and I have talked, 'Hey, look, we'll see what happens at the end of each and every year.' This is hard. It's a tough job. I love my players to death, my coaches. We work hard. We work very, very hard. The travel is grueling. So you're sitting here today, as I think about the future, all I'm thinking about is, hey, next year, I'm going to worry about that first. I don't go much farther than that."

Notes & quotes: Alderson said the team had invited all of Collins' coaches back for 2016, but bench coach Bob Geren is interviewing for the manager's job with the Dodgers.

New York Sports