Terry Collins is in the final year of a two-year extension he signed at the end of 2015.
To date, there have been no reports that he and the Mets have discussed a contract extension.
"That his situation remains unresolved is just one indication that there doesn't seem to be a clamoring within the Mets organization to retain Collins, and it may well be that -- after seven years of managing the Mets -- he's ready to move on to something else," ESPN.com's Buster Olney wrote this past weekend. "Nobody has said anything out loud, one way or the other."
This is not surprising, because a) Collins will be 69 years old next year and has hinted at considering retirement, and b) the Mets are on pace to lose 90 games this season, their most losses since 2009, which was the season before Collins and GM Sandy Alderson were hired.
Alderson's current three-year contract also expires at the end of this season.
Alderson speaks to reporters after the trade deadline in 2015. Credit: USA Today Sports.
From what I can gather, Ownership intends to make a decision on Alderson before the end of September, at which point a quick decision on Collins will almost certainly be announced. It's possible both men decide to leave on their own, of course, but I think that is a far more likely outcome for Collins than Alderson.
"If you had seen him going into the trade deadline he was as energetic as ever," a team official said about Alderson to the NY Post's Mike Puma last week. "He remains as involved in the organization as ever. I would be surprised if he walked away."
My educated guess is that Alderson will remain in his current role with the Mets through at least next season, after which (depending on the direction of the organization) he'll elevate to a more senior level, President of Baseball Operations position as his assistant, John Ricco, takes over day-to-day actions in his place. This is a growing dynamic in baseball and the Mets already have the essential players in house. So, it feels like a natural next step for everyone involved, especially for Ricco, who is already handling many of the day-to-day responsibilities of the modern GM.
The way I understand it, the majority of the team's ownership is more than satisfied with what Alderson and the front office has done for their business and brand since being hired seven years ago. I think the situation is a bit more complicated with Collins.
In the last week or so, I've heard insiders predict two meetings will occur after Alderson's future is locked in. The first will be with Collins, whose support is split among the people above him. The second will be with David Wright to determine how to handle the remainder of his career.
My hunch is that Alderson would prefer to bring in a new manager to work with him on leading next year's team, while transitioning Collins in to a different role within the organization. Mets owner Fred Wilpon is known for being incredibly loyal, and he still admires and appreciates Collins. So, in the end, the decision to stay, retire, or accept a different position may be left for Collins to decide.
Alderson, too, is a stand-up, respectful leader and, though I'm willing to bet he would prefer to make a switch, he almost certainly believes Collins has earned the right to choose his fate -- especially since this season's failure has more to do with Alderson's injured players than decisions made by Collins.
For Terry, his decision may end up being made on the basis of how things play out during the final month of the season. In listening to him the last few years, he appears to be a man that rolls in the direction of the momentum around him (for better or worse). Right now, he's managing a messed up, unstable situation with veterans who are coming, going, and playing through injury because they're about to be free agents.
Aug 3, 2017; Rosario (1) plays shortstop at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Downing-USA TODAY Sports
In September, though, he'll get a chance to fill out his lineup card with Amed Rosario and Dominic Smith, as well as Michael Conforto, Yoenis Cespedes, and Travis d'Arnaud, and possibly even Noah Syndergaard, Matt Harvey, and Jeurys Familia, all of whom are expected to have returned from the disabled list.
If when managing the people he'll be expected to manage next season, they respond and win, I bet Collins is inspired to return for 2018. And if he's motivated, Fred Wilpon will almost certainly have Terry's back. However, if the Mets and Collins continue to struggle, despite healthier, younger players, all of whom will be here next season, it would not surprise me to see Collins choose retirement so that Alderson can finally hire someone else.
In the end, I believe Terry Collins wants what is best for his players and not himself. He genuinely looks at these men like his children. He wants them to be individually successful and to win as a team. If he believes he's the right man to get them to that point, I think he'll choose to be back. However, if he doesn't feel he's the right person for the job, I truly believe he'll step aside, even if it means seeing them win with someone else at the helm.
Matthew Cerrone (Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Contact) is the host of SNY's MetsBlog Q&ACast and the lead writer of MetsBlog.com, which he created in 2003. His new book, The New York Mets Fans' Bucket List, details 44 things every Mets fan should experience during their lifetime. To check it out, click here!