The past two years have been quite a rollercoaster for New York Mets manager Terry Collins. A 2014 Mets team with potential but few expectations to compete for the division not only won the NL East, but made it all the way to the World Series. So far this year, the team is much in the same boat as they were this time last year: fighting for a playoff spot and looking to overtake the Nationals for first place. It’s been a lot of ups and downs, but Collins has handled it all quite admirably.
Terry’s marriage to his wife, Deborah Collins, isn’t much longer than his tenure with the Mets. But their history together predates his entire career in baseball. Though a private person without many pictures, she’s been a supportive wife to one of baseball’s most tenured managers.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. They’ve Known Each Other Since They Were Young Children
The specific age the two were when they met varies depending on what source you read. A 2015 Newsday profile of Terry during the playoffs claims that the two have known each other since they were 10 years old, and that they attended the same high school, “where Collins was captain of the football, baseball and basketball teams.” But in an interview with local Michigan publication MLive, Collins claims that they’ve known each other since junior high school, when they were 12.
Though married much later in life, the two dated in college. According to a New York Post interview, they had considered marriage together as far back as when they were 20 years old.
2. Deborah Was Married to a Mutual Friend For 27 Years Prior to Their Marriage
The young couple, of course, did not marry young. They broke up, and by the time they reconnected in any way, Collins had reached a point where he was coaching in the minors. In that time, Deborah had gotten married and had a family. Her husband, Collins said in the Post interview, was a “good friend of mine, a kid we went to high school with.” Deborah and her first husband were married for 27 years when he passed away. Collins, at the time, was managing in China.
As a long-time friend, Collins reached out to Deborah to give his condolences. A relationship blossomed between the two, and moved quickly. According to Newsday, they married in 2010. Not long after, Collins joined the Mets. He would work as a field coordinator with them to start his tenure. Collins had returned to Major League Baseball with a wife and step-children and grandchildren.
3. She and Terry Are Both From Midland, Michigan And, According to the Mets Website, Currently Live in Virginia
Deborah and Terry’s hometown is, as the aforementioned MLive article discusses, Midland, Michigan. It was there they attended Northeast Junior High, and it’s there that, according to the article, he and Deborah still visit old friends.
Not a lot is known about where the married couple lives now. An MLB.com informational page on Collins says that the two live in Midlothian, Virginia. It’s not clear when the page was last updated.
4. She Has Traveled Around the Country With Terry
Deborah has been fairly close to Terry’s career with the New York Mets. That includes traveling around the entire country in his first season with the Mets, when he was just a field coordinator for their minor league system. Said Deborah to Newsday of the time on the road, “We had the greatest time when he was the field coordinator, traveling around when he wasn’t under extreme pressure.”
This persona contrasts with the tough persona Collins used to have as a manager, and one he dealt with his first year managing the Mets. Terry, in Newsday, recalled car rides home after tough losses, his furious silences that were broken up by Deborah’s words of comfort:
‘Now,’ Collins said, stifling a laugh in the retelling, ‘are you going to be mad at the whole world for the rest of the night?
5. She Questioned His Decisions With the Bullpen in Game 4 of the 2015 World Series
Terry has joked in the past that Deborah has called him an “idiot” before. And she has, in the past, called Collins out on questionable managerial decisions.
One such decision was in Game 4 of the 2015 World Series, which is one of several the Mets blew late. In the 8th inning of what looked to be a must-win game with the Mets already down 2-1 in the series, Collins brought reliever Tyler Clippard in for the 8th innings, instead of bringing in closer Jeurys Familia for 2 innings. Familia eventually had to come in after Clippard walked two batters, who ended up scoring.
Some may have questioned Collins’ decision to bring Clippard in. Deborah was one of those questioners, according to MLB.com. Terry told Anthony DiComo his reasoning for not bringing Familia in to start the 8th, and noted that Deborah, on the car ride home, asked him why Familia hadn’t been brought in. Collins asked her where she was when he had to make his decision. Her response? “I was getting a taco.”