Terry Collins

Terry Collins learned his lesson


Good feature by Ken Rosenthal on Mets manager Terry Collins. The man who once had his clubhouse revolt against him and petition the GM to have him fired — the 1999 Angels were awesome! — is now a different kind of dude, who is well aware of his past faults:

“I was not good. I did the ‘Woe-is-me’ stuff,” Collins said. “We were just trying to plug up holes instead of really saying, ‘Look, we’ve got to grind this out. We’re supposed to win.’ I let it affect the way I went about things. The clubhouse issues arose — and probably rightly so … Because of my past and where I am right now, age-wise, career-wise, I was surprised I was even asked to be interviewed. But I said, ‘If I get this, I’m going to enjoy it more. I’m going to enjoy the job.”

It’s always easier to be more relaxed when expectations are low, as they were for the Mets these past two years, and it’s always easier to be positive when things go well, as they are at the moment for the Mets, than when they go poorly. So it remains to be seen what Collins will do when he’s managing a team with expectations which fails to meet them.  But the fact that he can be so self-aware about his past failures suggests that Collins truly is a different dude now than he was back in the day.

Astros stave off AL West elimination, beat the Diamondbacks

Colby Rasmus, Gary Pettis
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Facing an elimination number of one, the Astros staved off elimination in the AL West by beating the Diamondbacks on Friday night by a 6-1 margin. The Rangers suffered a heartbreaking loss to the Angels on Saturday afternoon, which temporarily put the Astros’ fate in their own hands.

Colby Rasmus hit a pair of solo homers and Jose Altuve added a solo shot of his own. Starter Collin McHugh tossed seven innings of one-run ball, limiting the Diamondbacks to six hits and a walk with six strikeouts. Reliever Will Harris allowed a solo home run to Paul Goldschmidt in the eighth, but Luke Gregerson closed out the game with a scoreless ninth.

The Astros trail the Rangers by one game in the AL West and lead the Angels by one game for the second AL Wild Card slot. The Rangers can clinch the AL West on Sunday afternoon with a win or an Astros loss. The Astros can clinch the second AL Wild Card on Sunday afternoon with a win or an Angels loss.

The Yankees lost both ends of Saturday’s doubleheader against the Orioles and lead the Astros by only one game for the first AL Wild Card slot.

If the Astros win and the Rangers lose on Sunday, they will play an AL West tiebreaker in Texas. The winner will win the second AL Wild Card if the Yankees win on Sunday, or the first AL Wild Card if the Yankees lose on Sunday.

If the Astros lose and the Angels win on Sunday, the two teams will be tied for the second AL Wild Card. They would play a tiebreaker in Houston, and the winner would play the Yankees in New York in the Wild Card game.

Video: Kelby Tomlinson slides in for an inside-the-park home run

Kelby Tomlinson
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Giants second baseman Kelby Tomlinson looked more like Ladainian Tomlinson the way he was running during Saturday afternoon’s game against the Rockies. In the first inning with one out against starter Chris Rusin, Tomlinson hit a fly ball into the right-center field gap at AT&T Park, a great place to go if you’re in the mood for an inside-the-park home run.

Neither Carlos Gonzalez nor Chris Dickerson could corral the ball before it rolled all the way to the 421-foot marker at the fence. Tomlinson motored around the bases, but Gonzalez made a strong throw into cut-off man D.J. LeMahieu, and LeMahieu made a great throw in to catcher Tom Murphy, but Tomlinson slid in safely just ahead of the tag.

It was an exciting play and the hit proved important as the Giants eked out a 3-2 win against the Rockies.