Signed out of the University of Texas, for a dozen years Higgins was a hard-hitting, steady-fielding third baseman. Especially dangerous with men on base, he twice drove in 106 runs. Higgins set a ML record when he hit safely in 12 consecutive at-bats in 1938. He hit .333 in the 1940 World Series with the Tigers and handled a record ten chances at third base in Game Four. After playing in all seven games of the 1946 WS with the Red Sox, Higgins retired.
A low-key approach and patience with young players made Higgins a popular manager in the minors and later with the Red Sox. In 1955, his first of eight seasons managing Boston, he was named TSN Manager of the Year. His best showings were third-place finishes in 1957-58. Higgins also served as Red Sox vice president and GM, and later was an Astro scout.