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Thursday, February 29, 2024

Manny Acta played in minors, became manager, trusted voice

Manny Acta 1990 Osceola Astros card

Former Nationals and Indians manager Manny Acta joined the Mariners as third base coach in 2015 and later moved to bench coaching duties.

The Mariners needed Acta's experience in the dugout, Seattle general manager Jerry Dipoto told in February 2018.

"He was already running a good deal of the bench-coach duties, and the one thing we didn't let him do was influence the in-game situations," Dipoto told "But by bringing him in the dugout, he's a natural source. He's an ally and a trusted voice."

Acta gained that experience over three decades in the game, first as a player and then as a young manager in the minors, then in the majors as a manager and coach.

Acta's career began in 1987, signed by the Astros out of his native Dominican Republic.

Acta started with the Astros in the rookie Gulf Coast League. He moved to single-A Osceola for 1988, then saw 41 games between AA Columbus and Osceola for 1989.

In July 1990, at high-A Osceola, he spoke to The Associated Press about language issues.

"When I started, language was a big problem. If you didn't understand a coach, he didn't say, 'He doesn't speak English.' He said, "This guy is stupid," Acta told The AP. "Now every rookie team has a Spanish speaker and they pay for English school."

He saw 44 games at Osceola that year and 41 games at Columbus. He finished out his playing career in 1991 at single-A Burlington.

Acta then got his first managerial job at short-season Auburn for 1993, at age 24. He then stayed at Auburn for four seasons. He managed 1997 at single-A Quad City. He served as hitting coach at AAA New Orleans for 2001.

For 2002, he made the majors as third base coach with the Expos. He moved to the Mets in 2005. Then, in 2007, he became manager of the Nationals. He managed there three seasons before joining the Indians as manager in 2010.

"We went through a thorough process, talked to people who had managed against him and played for him at every level," Indians general manager Mark Shapiro told reporters of the hire, "and the same kind of comments about Manny kept coming through -- his character, his resourcefulness, his desire to continue to improve, his ability to teach and bring the best out of players.

Acta stayed with the Indians three seasons. He later joined the Mariners. He continues with the Mariners in 2024 as third base coach.

Manny Acta 1990 Osceola Astros card

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:4,317
Made the Majors:1,396-32.4%
Never Made Majors:2,921-67.2%
5+ Seasons in the Majors:569
10+ Seasons in the Minors:350

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