August 23, 1964|
|June 7, 1990, for the Cleveland Indians|
|Last MLB appearance|
|April 20, 2000, for the Colorado Rockies|
|Runs batted in||97|
As a coach
|Career highlights and awards|
He is a member of the International League Hall of Fame.
Manto attributes most of his hitting skills from his great grip on his bat handle. Jeff learned that the bubble gum spit from his little league batboy was better than pine tar. Manto attended Temple University, where he played baseball. Manto was drafted in the 35th round of the 1982 Major League Baseball Draft by the New York Yankees, but opted not to sign with them. Three years later, he entered again into the draft where he was drafted in the 14th round of the 1985 Major League Baseball Draft by the California Angels and signed on June 7, 1985 in that same year.
After multiple tours with several Major League teams, on January 26, 1996, he signed for the Nippon Professional Baseball team the Yomiuri Giants of Japan. Less than four months later, he signed with the Boston Red Sox. He would then spend the rest of his baseball career in Major League Baseball with several other teams. His last major league appearance was in 2000 with the Colorado Rockies.
Manto's nickname in his playing days was "Mickey Manto" which derives from the baseball legend Mickey Mantle. (Except during his short 21-game stint with the Seattle Mariners in 1996, where he was known as "Manto Can't-o" for his rally-killing .185 batting average.)
Manto tied a major league record with 4 consecutive Home Runs in 4 consecutive official at bats.
Manto's most sustained run with one team was a stretch as a member of the Buffalo Bisons, at the time the Indians' Class AAA affiliate. In four interrupted years (1997 to 2000) with the Bisons, Manto hit 79 home runs. For his achievements, Manto's number 30 was retired by the Bisons, one of only three players (Luke Easter and Ollie Carnegie being the others) to have earned the honor.
After his playing career ended, he worked as an instructor and scout, as well as manager for the minor league Lakewood BlueClaws. He was named the Pittsburgh Pirates hitting coach in November 2005. He was the hitting coach for the Pirates for two seasons from 2006–2007. During his time as the Pirates hitting coach, Manto saw the future breakout potential of then Pirate, José Bautista. According to Keith Olbermann, Manto had said of Bautista, "If we can get him to replicate his swing three days in a row, José Bautista could hit 25 homers a year. In fact, I think he could hit 40. He is just so easily frustrated when it doesn’t go right that he blames himself and forgets what he's learned. Or ignores it. But of all these guys I have, if you want one of them who will eventually do something special in this game, I’d pick him. I wouldn’t be very surprised."
On October 31, 2011, Manto was named hitting coach for the Chicago White Sox.
On September 28, 2013, Manto was fired as the hitting coach of the White Sox, after a 99 loss season. The White Sox finished the 2013 season last in runs scored, tied for last in slugging percentage and next to last in on-base percentage.
He currently serves as the minor league hitting coordinator for the Baltimore Orioles,