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Jimmy Collins
Third Baseman/Manager
Born: January 16, 1870(1870-01-16)
Buffalo, New York
Died: March 6, 1943 (aged 73)
Buffalo, New York
Batted: Right Threw: Right 
MLB debut
April 19, 1895 for the Louisville Colonels
Last MLB appearance
August 29, 1908 for the Philadelphia Athletics
Career statistics
Batting average     .285
Hits     1999
Runs batted in     983
Career highlights and awards
  • World Series champion: 1903
  • National League pennant: 1897, 1898
  • American League pennant: 1904
  • National League home run champion: 1898
  • 5 seasons with a .300+ batting average
  • 2 seasons with 100+ RBI
  • 4 seasons with 100+ runs scored
Member of the National
Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Baseball Hall of Fame Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg
Induction     1945
Election Method     Veteran's Committee

James Joseph Collins (January 16, 1870 – March 6, 1943) was a Major League Baseball player at the turn of the 20th century who was widely regarded as being the best third baseman prior to Brooks Robinson. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1945.



Collins joined the major leagues in 1895 as a member of the Louisville Colonels, but would finish the season with the Boston Beaneaters. He asserted himself as a skilled player in 1897 when he held a .346 batting average and knocked in 132 runs. He followed with an equally impressive 1898 season, in which he hit .328, drove in 111 runs and belted a league-high 15 home runs.

However it was Collins' defense that made him a star. He was best known for his ability to field a bunt -- prior to his debut, it was the shortstop who fielded bunts down the third base line - and is regarded as a pioneer of the modern defensive play of a third baseman.

Jimmy Collins (center, below) with infielders Bobby Lowe, Fred Tenney and Herman Long

Collins joined the Boston Red Sox in 1901 as a player and a manager. He led the team to the World Series title in 1903 and the American League pennant in 1904.

Collins was traded to the Philadelphia Athletics in 1907 and retired there after the 1908 season. He finished his career with 65 home runs, 1055 runs, 983 RBI and a .294 batting average.


When Collins was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1945 he was the first to be chosen primarily as a third baseman. In 1981, Lawrence Ritter and Donald Honig included him in their book The 100 Greatest Baseball Players of All Time.

In a 1976 Esquire magazine article, sportswriter Harry Stein published an "All Time All-Star Argument Starter," consisting of five ethnic baseball teams. Because of space limitations the Irish team, including Collins as third baseman, was omitted.

Jimmy Collins was born and died in Buffalo, New York. He is buried in Holy Cross (Roman Catholic) Cemetery, in nearby Lackawanna.

See also

External links

Preceded by
Hugh Duffy
National League Home Run Champion
Succeeded by
Buck Freeman
Preceded by
First Manager
Boston Americans manager
Succeeded by
Chick Stahl


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