NEW YORK -- Long before becoming manager of the Mets, Terry Collins was a baseball man. Over five decades, Collins rode countless Minor League buses, accepted whatever jobs he could find, learned from some of the game's living legends and, in 2015, nearly reached the pinnacle of his sport.MLB Network
NEW YORK -- Long before becoming manager of the Mets, Terry Collins was a baseball man. Over five decades, Collins rode countless Minor League buses, accepted whatever jobs he could find, learned from some of the game's living legends and, in 2015, nearly reached the pinnacle of his sport.
MLB Network captured that journey in its documentary, "Terry Collins: A Life in Baseball," which airs Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET.
"It's hard to imagine a richer or more complete life in baseball than Terry Collins," senior coordinating producer Bruce Cornblatt said. "Terry was such an interesting subject, because he's smart. He's emotional. And he was in the middle of the news."
The latest in MLB Network's documentary series, "MLB Network Presents," spends plenty of time focusing on Collins' news-making World Series run, including his decision to let Matt Harvey pitch the ninth inning of Game 5 against the Royals. But the documentary's focus is on Collins the person, from his Michigan roots to his decades climbing baseball's coaching ladder. MLB Network's Tom Verducci spent a day interviewing his subject at Dodgertown in Vero Beach, Fla., where Collins cut his teeth as both a Minor League player and coach.
Featuring interviews with former managers Jim Leyland and Tony La Russa, the film opens with an introduction from broadcaster Bob Costas, before continuing with Collins' memories from Dodgertown and beyond. Included are scenes depicting Collins' turbulent stints as manager in Houston and with the Angels, as well as his speech inside the Wrigley Field clubhouse after the Mets won the National League pennant last season. Verducci and the MLB Network crew filmed as possible following the World Series, when Collins' memories were freshest.
"I've had a great life," Collins says toward the end of the documentary. "There's been some ups and downs, but that's life. Nobody's been able to live their dream like I have. You sit here and say, 'How did I get here?' I'm just Terry Collins from Midland, Michigan."
The film ends with Collins recalling a childhood story about his father, Bud, who passed away last February -- one of many such stories, Collins intimates, that molded him into the man and manager he is today.
"That kind of resolve, that kind of personal story, is why we do this stuff," Cornblatt said. "And it was great."
Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.