Dave Collins

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Dave Collins
Born: (1952-10-20) October 20, 1952 (age 66)
Rapid City, South Dakota
Batted: Switch Threw: Left
MLB debut
June 7, 1975, for the California Angels
Last MLB appearance
October 3, 1990, for the St. Louis Cardinals
MLB statistics
Batting average.272
Home runs32
Runs batted in373
Stolen bases395

David S. Collins (born October 20, 1952) is a former outfielder in Major League Baseball from 1975 to 1990.

Collins is one of three players to have made it to the major leagues who played for the storied Rapid City Post 22 American Legion baseball program in Rapid City, South Dakota. The other two are Kelvin Torve and Mark Ellis. All three were graduates of Stevens High School.

Playing career[edit]


Collins was drafted in the first round of the 1972 draft from Mesa Community College by the California Angels. He made his professional debut with the Angels Rookie ball team in Idaho Falls and moved up through the Angels farm system, with stops in Single-A Quad City and Salinas, Double-A El Paso and Triple-A Salt Lake City. He was dubbed "fastest white man in baseball" because he ran the 100-yard dash in 9.6 seconds and had high stolen base totals.

California Angels[edit]

He made his major league debut for the Angels on June 7, 1975, playing left field and batting leadoff, against the Milwaukee Brewers. He recorded his first career hit the following day against Brewers pitcher Tom Murphy.

Seattle Mariners[edit]

After two seasons as a utility player and reserve outfielder with the Angels, he was selected by the Seattle Mariners with the 14th pick in the 1976 Major League Baseball expansion draft. He was the first batter for the Mariners in their first game, and scored the franchise's first run two days later.[1]

Cincinnati Reds[edit]

After that 1977 season, the Mariners traded Collins to the Cincinnati Reds for Shane Rawley, and he spent the subsequent four seasons with the Reds. He hit .318 in 1979 and .303 in 1980, during which he also stole 79 bases.

New York Yankees[edit]

Collins was signed by the New York Yankees as a free agent prior to the 1982 season.

Toronto Blue Jays[edit]

Collins was traded by the Yankees, along with Mike Morgan, Fred McGriff and cash to the Toronto Blue Jays in 1983 for Tom Dodd and Dale Murray. He hit .271 and .308 in his two seasons in Toronto, and currently holds the Blue Jays single season stolen base record with 60 steals in 1984.

Oakland A's[edit]

Collins was traded in December of 1984 by the Blue Jays, along with Alfredo Griffin and cash, to the Oakland Athletics, in exchange for Bill Caudill. Collins hit .251 in 112 games for Oakland during the 1985 season.

Detroit Tigers[edit]

He was then traded to the Detroit Tigers for Bárbaro Garbey in November 1985. As a part-time outfielder with Detroit, he hit .270 and stole 27 bases.

Montreal Expos[edit]

Picked up by the Montreal Expos as a free agent after the season, he was cut during spring training.

Cincinnati Reds[edit]

He was signed by the Cincinnati Reds, with whom he had previously had the most success. Used as a fourth outfielder/pinch hitter by the Reds, he found some success, hitting .294 in 1987, but his average dropped to .236 in 1988. In 1989, he was released.

St. Louis Cardinals[edit]

Collins' last season was in 1990, with the St. Louis Cardinals, batting .224 in 99 games as a first baseman.

Career Statistics[edit]

In 1701 games over 16 seasons, Collins compiled a .272 batting average (1335-for-4907) with 667 runs, 187 doubles, 52 triples, 32 home runs, 373 RBI, 395 stolen bases, 467 base on balls, 660 strikeouts, .338 on-base percentage and .351 slugging percentage. Defensively, he recorded a .986 fielding percentage at all three outfield positions and at first base.


He played briefly for the Fort Myers Sun Sox of the Senior Professional Baseball Association after his retirement from the majors.

Collins presently[when?] is volunteering at the Lighthouse Correctional Facility, conducting one hour motivational and life skills to young offenders, with the hope of enhancing and changing their lives.[citation needed]

Coaching career[edit]

Dave coached for various MLB organization, and also coached the Inland Empire 66ers in 2007. In addition to coaching at the Major and Minor League levels, Collins was also the head coach for Anna High School in Anna, Ohio from 1992 to 1994. He was the head baseball and basketball coach for Lake Orion High School in Lake Orion, Michigan from 1996 to 1998. In 2009, he was assistant coach for the Ontario Blue Jays 18U team.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Mariners Firsts, Seattle Mariners. Accessed September 24, 2008.

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Jim Riggleman
St. Louis Cardinals first base coach
Succeeded by
Jack Hubbard
Preceded by
Ron Oester
Cincinnati Reds first base coach
Succeeded by
Bill Doran
Preceded by
Alan Cockrell
Salem Avalanche Manager
Succeeded by
Stu Cole
Preceded by
Luis Salazar
Milwaukee Brewers first base coach
Succeeded by
Dave Nelson
Preceded by
Dallas Williams
Colorado Rockies first base coach
Succeeded by
Glenallen Hill
Preceded by
Gary Thurman
Inland Empire 66ers Manager
Succeeded by
John Valentin
Preceded by
Andy Fox
Florida Marlins first base coach
Succeeded by
Perry Hill