Manuel Lee

This article was written by Malcolm Allen

In a major-league career spanning all or parts of 11 seasons (1985-1995), switch-hitting middle infielder Manuel Lee spent his first six years playing mostly second base for the Toronto Blue Jays while he backed up fellow Dominican Republic native Tony Fernández at shortstop. After Fernández was traded, the s
trong-armed Lee started at shortstop for two straight AL East-champion Toronto teams, including the 1992 World Series winners. Lee then joined the Texas Rangers for two seasons before finishing his career with the St. Louis Cardinals.

Manuel Lora Lee was born on June 17, 1965, in San Pedro de Macorís. His father – named Lara Sanchez according to a Toronto Star article – was in his early 60s at the time, while his mother, Ana Carolina Lee, was in her mid-40s.1 Lora was Manuel’s paternal surname, but he became known as Lee in professional baseball because of a misunderstanding of Spanish naming customs.2 (The Rojas Alou brothers – Felipe, Mateo and Jesús – similarly gained fame as the Alous.)

It is likely that Manuel’s father worked in the sugar industry, the city’s chief source of employment. In his 1989 history of baseball in the Dominican Republic, The Tropic of Baseball, Rob Ruck described Lee as a descendant of cocolos – what some Dominicans called emigrants from the mostly British-controlled neighboring islands who had come to cut sugar cane in the early twentieth century.3 Ana Carolina, a domestic, was born in Cuba, but her parents were from Montserrat, a small island in the Lesser Antilles. The family hoped to return to Montserrat after her father died but, she explained, “We never had the money to leave.”4

Manuel had at least three siblings – brothers Gribi and Cortes, and sister Buena Ventura.5 In 1985, a reporter visited the small wooden house with a cement floor where Lee had been raised and found seven family members still living there.6Pedro Guerrero, a co-MVP of the 1981 World Series for the Dodgers, grew up on the same street.7

Lee did not play baseball for Liceo José Joaquín Pérez when he was a student, but he ascended through the Dominican equivalents of Little League and American Legion.8 He did not own his first glove until 1980, when he was part of a strong amateur squad representing the Ingenio Porvenir sugar mill.9 Lee admired a San Pedro de Macorís resident who earned a share of the 1979 American League Rookie of the Year Award, Blue Jays shortstop Alfredo Griffin.10 “Alfredo was my boyhood hero,” he said.11

Lee was small – listed at 5-foot-9, 161 pounds in the majors.12 He fashioned barbells out of concrete to strengthen his wrists and upper body. In his back yard, he swung at a tire that he hung from a steel pole to improve his timing and batting eye. “I thought it was strange,” his mother acknowledged.13

When Lee signed with the New York Mets for $2,000 through scout Eddy Toledo on May 10, 1982, his family’s annual income – through his father’s pension and his brothers’ employment – was just over $1,600. “I thank the Lord that baseball has allowed Manuel to help us,” said his mother.14

Lee was assigned to the Kingsport (Tennessee) Mets of the rookie-level Appalachian League in 1982. New York’s fifth-round draft pick, Gerald Young, was the main shortstop. Lee made nine of his 16 appearances at second base and batted .222.

In 1983 Young shifted to the outfield, but Lee remained primarily a second baseman in a year that he split between two short-season clubs. In 32 games with the Mets’ rookie-level Gulf Coast League affiliate in Sarasota, Florida, Lee batted .247. With the Little Falls (New York) Mets of the Class A New York-Pennsylvania League, he improved to .289 in 17 contests.

Lee blossomed into an All-Star shortstop in the Class-A South Atlantic League in 1984.15 In 102 games for the Columbia (South Carolina) Mets, his .330 batting average topped the circuit, and his .424 on-base percentage, 84 runs scored, 60 walks, and 24 stolen bases remained his best marks as a professional. Meanwhile the major-league Mets were surprise contenders and, to bolster their playoff chances, they traded three players to be named later to the Houston Astros for former All-Star Ray Knight on August 28. Houston acquired Lee and Young on August 31, and Double-A pitcher Tim Cook in September. “When I told [Lee] he was one of the players traded, he started to cry because he did not want to leave the Mets,” recalled Columbia manager Rich Miller.16

Despite Lee’s lofty average, one scout observed, “Most of his hits were soft. He needs a lot of work with the bat.”17 The Astros left Lee exposed in the Rule 5 draft, confident that no big-league club would fill a roster spot with such an inexperienced player. On December 3, however, the Blue Jays selected Lee and Single-A outfielder Lou Thornton, both of whom spent the entire 1985 season in the majors. “We were a little surprised that [Houston] didn’t protect Lee,” said Toronto GM Pat Gillick. “We’ve had him as a definite prospect since ’82.”18 Epy Guerrero, the Blue Jays’ chief Dominican scout, had recommended him.19

“I can’t figure Toronto out,” remarked Astros GM Al Rosen. “Manny is a young, young player – several years, maybe three years away from being major-league caliber. Maybe we know less than they do about Manny, but I think Alfredo Griffin and Tony Fernández are pretty good players and, for the life of me, I can’t figure out why they’d want a 19-year-old shortstop, too.”20 Five days after Lee was drafted, Toronto traded Griffin to the Oakland A’s to clear a starting job for Fernández. From 1985 to 1989, Griffin and Fernández won five straight AL Gold Glove Awards.

That winter, Lee joined the San Cristóbal-based Caimanes del Sur for the Dominican League playoffs and went 3-for-5 in three games.

In spring training, Toronto issued Lee uniform number 4 – Griffin’s former digit. With Fernández and Dominican second baseman Damaso García entrenched as starters, Lee wouldn’t play much, but Blue Jays manager Bobby Cox observed, “He’s exceptional with the glove.”21 Lee was the only teenager in the majors when he debuted on April 10, 1985, as a pinch-runner at Royals Stadium. He got his first hit on June 2 – a single off Cleveland’s Rick Behenna. Overall, he and started just four of his 64 appearances and batted .200 (8-for-40). The Blue Jays seized first place in May and won their first-ever AL East title.

Like Lee and Fernández, Toronto’s RBI leader, George Bell, was from San Pedro de Macorís. In the postseason, the city was also represented by the Dodgers’ Pedro Guerrero and Mariano Duncan, and Joaquín Andújar of the Cardinals. “All of Macorís is hoping for the Jays to win,” Lee’s father told the Toronto Star.22 Lee pinch-ran and played the final inning of Toronto’s Game One ALCS victory over the Royals. But after building a three-games-to-one lead, the Blue Jays lost three straight and the Series.

Toronto wanted Lee to play a full Dominican League season, but he was suspended by the Caimanes over a salary dispute. The circuit’s commissioner, Papi Bisonó, ordered that the team’s initial 1,200-peso offer (roughly $520) be increased to 3,000 pesos, but Lee wouldn’t sign because that was still less than the typical minimum for big leaguers. “He thinks he’s a major leaguer,” Bisonó said. “I told him he’d be going back to the minor leagues this year and he’d be riding on buses, not planes.”23

Lee began 1986 in the Triple-A International League with the Syracuse (New York) Chiefs. After batting .167 in 17 appearances, he was demoted to the Double-A Southern League. With the Knoxville (Tennessee) Blue Jays, he regrouped, hitting .272 in 41 games, and he returned to Syracuse after Chiefs shortstop Alexis Infante broke his collarbone.24 In Triple A, Lee raised his batting average to .246 before August 11, when he was recalled by Toronto to replace the injured Rance Mulliniks. During the nine-game winning streak that lifted the Blue Jays back into contention entering September, Lee started six times and collected his first big-league homer and RBIs. “Last year I was too young, like a little baby,” he said. “My feeling is very different.”25

After his recall, Lee started more games at second base than any Toronto player.26 “He reads the ball off the bat real well. He’s got a good arm, and a lot of range,” said first-year Blue Jays manager Jimy Williams. 27 Although Lee batted just .205 in 35 contests, hitting coach Cito Gaston said, “We’ve got him choking up a bit, and he’s been working on swinging down on the ball… I don’t think he’s going to be an out man.”28

That winter, Lee played second base for La Romana-based Azucareros del Este and earned Dominican League Rookie of the Year honors by hitting .319 in 33 games. He was even better in nine playoff contests, batting .410.

Toronto traded García, but 25-year-old rookie Mike Sharperson was the Blue Jays’ Opening Day second baseman in 1987 while Lee returned to Syracuse. Before May was over, however, Lee and Sharperson switched places. Lee split second base with Garth Iorg in Toronto, but the veteran claimed the position full-time before the All-Star break. “I played shortstop in Syracuse and when they called me up I played second base,” Lee recalled. “I never felt comfortable.”29Despite batting .267 in 34 games, Lee was sent back to Syracuse on July 24. A switch-hitting Dominican supplanted Iorg in late August, but it was Nelson Liriano, a speedy rookie who hit righties better than Lee. “If Toronto calls me up again, I guess I’d have to go, but I don’t want to,” Lee said. “I just want to stay in the big leagues somewhere and stop going up and down.”30

As it happened, Fernández sprained a knee ligament and Lee was recalled in September to spell him in the late innings.31 Toronto was battling the Detroit Tigers for the AL East title. The Blue Jays led by a half-game with 10 to play when Fernández suffered a season-ending elbow injury on a hard slide by Detroit’s Bill Madlock. That night, Lee earned a standing ovation by snaring a seventh-inning line drive with a leaping, backhanded grab to preserve Toronto’s one-run lead. He scored the winning run in the ninth inning the following evening after tying the game with a two-run triple off the Tigers’ Willie Hernández. “He can flat out play,” raved manager Williams.32

Toronto’s advantage was one game entering a final-weekend showdown at Tiger Stadium. In Friday night’s series opener, Lee’s three-run homer off the right-field upper deck facing drew first blood but Detroit rallied to win, 4-3, behind former Blue Jay Doyle Alexander. On Saturday afternoon, Lee’s fifth-inning error led to an unearned run that evened the score. The teams remained deadlocked until the bottom of the 12th, when the Tigers prevailed on Alan Trammell’s bases-loaded single – a sharp grounder that was ruled a hit even though it went between Lee’s legs. Toronto was eliminated the next day, 1-0, despite Lee’s triple off Frank Tanana.

That winter Lee compiled a .373 on-base percentage in 44 games for the Azucareros. He was late for spring training in 1988 as he sought a visa for his widowed mother to summer with him in Toronto. Tendinitis in Lee’s throwing shoulder forced him to begin the season on the disabled list. In mid-May he returned to the DL after suffering a contusion in the same shoulder on a stolen-base attempt.33

When Lee was healthy, his ability to play second, short or third afforded Williams valuable flexibility.34 But Lee believed that playing multiple positions prevented him from mastering any. By season’s end, he had taken over as Toronto’s primary second baseman. Overall, Lee appeared in 116 games in 1988 and batted .291, his major-league best. “If I play, I’m happy in Toronto,” he said.35

However, during the latter stages of a Dominican League campaign in which he hit .294 for the Azucareros, Lee attempted to gain free agency on a technicality – claiming the Blue Jays had failed to tender his contract before the December 20 deadline. (A similar situation had allowed Carlton Fisk to leave the Boston Red Sox and sign a lucrative deal with the Chicago White Sox in the 1980-81 offseason.) In January the Major League Baseball Players Association determined that Toronto had mailed the contract in time. “Manny is very disappointed, to say the least,” said Lee’s agent, Jaime Torres.36 Two weeks later, Torres responded to Toronto’s $130,000 salary proposal for his client by saying, “They’ve insulted him with a laughable offer.”37 Lee signed for $160,000 in 1989.38

During spring training, Lee said, “I like Toronto, I like the people, I want to play there again this year.”39 The second-base job was his according to Williams, but Lee shifted to shortstop less than one week into the 1989 season after Fernández fractured his cheekbone. On April 29, though, Lee sprained his left ankle.40 By the time he returned on June 9, the sixth-place Blue Jays’ new manager, Gaston, planned to platoon him with Liriano. Lee requested a trade.41Overall, he batted .260 in 99 games as Toronto came back to overtake the Baltimore Orioles for the division title. In the ALCS, Lee started two of the five games, but the Blue Jays fell to Oakland.

That winter, Torres – Lee’s agent and Liriano’s friend – said, “The Jays have been greedy by keeping both.… They’ve also deprived these two players of the kinds of income they would be receiving if they weren’t on the same team.”42Although Lee more than doubled his salary to $380,000 in 1990, he understood that playing every day in Toronto remained unlikely.43 “If I do get traded, the two guys I’d probably miss most around here are Tony [Fernández] and Nelson [Liriano],” he said. “We have a lot in common. We always talk with each other. Tony’s the only guy on the club who I talk to about baseball.… If I talked to Nelson about baseball, I might say something to him that I shouldn’t say.”44

Prior to the All-Star break in 1990, Lee batted .271 with six homers – one fewer than his previous career total. Five came within 42 at-bats in May. Liriano was traded on July 27, while Lee went on to lead AL second basemen with a .993 fielding percentage. But the Blue Jays finished two games behind the Red Sox in second place. Lee batted .222 in the second half and heard frequent boos.45 Fans and coaches were frustrated by his inability to bunt and reported unwillingness to learn. “I feel like I’ve been letting everyone down,” Lee said. “They say I’m the second baseman who should have been traded, not Nelson. That hurts.”46

In December, Toronto traded Fernández and slugger Fred McGriff to the San Diego Padres for Joe Carter and future Hall of Famer Roberto Alomar – creating an opening for Lee at shortstop. “I’ve got big shoes to fill,” Lee said. “I haven’t played regular shortstop in five years. It’s going to be tough for me.”47 The day after Fernández was dealt, Bell signed with the Chicago Cubs as a free agent. Earlier that week, the Blue Jays had sent Dominican outfielder Junior Félix to the California Angels in a six-player swap that landed Gold Glove center fielder Devon White. Lee acknowledged that many of his countrymen interpreted the transactions as proof that the Toronto organization had become anti-Dominican. “But I don’t believe that the Blue Jays are like that,” he said. “It’s business, that’s all.”48

Regarding Blue Jays fans, however, Lee lamented his belief during spring training that many of them would prefer 1989 first-round draft pick Eddie Zosky to start at shortstop. “Toronto is the first and only town that I’ve played in where the people don’t like me,” he said. “When a Dominican guy does something wrong, the fans in Toronto are all over him right away. When an American player does something wrong, they don’t bother him.”49 Going forward, Lee said that he wanted to be called “Manuel,” rather than the diminutive “Manny” that he had been tagged with when he entered professional baseball.50

Lee won the position battle, and the Blue Jays enjoyed a strong start in 1991. “I knew Manny Lee could play shortstop,” remarked Gaston. “I tell people around the league that Manny is one of the best-kept secrets in baseball.”51 Hours before one contest at SkyDome, Lee and Alomar were spotted talking at length, practicing their timing and footwork on double plays.52 Lee executed 10 sacrifice hits to match his previous career total, but his batting average dropped to .234, and he became the first major-leaguer in history to strike out at least 100 times (107) without hitting a home run.53“I just forgot about hitting. I just thought about playing defense,” he said.54 The Blue Jays won their division but fell to the Minnesota Twins in the ALCS.

Although Toronto recorded the majors’ second-best Defensive Efficiency in 1991, Lee did not rate as well personally.55Of the 10 AL shortstops who played at least 1,000 innings, he posted the worst range factor per nine-innings, and his Defensive Wins Above Replacement ranked sixth. “The most impressive thing about his range is his vertical leap, not the amount of territory he covers to his left or right,” observed the Globe and Mail’s Larry Millson. “This is a shortstop who appears timid in plays around the bag at second.”56 Consequently, Lee would battle Zosky – coming off an All-Star season at Syracuse – to retain his job in 1992. The one-year, $1 million contract that Lee signed that winter offered little security, as Toronto would owe him just one-sixth of that amount if they released him before March 20.57 When the Blue Jays played an exhibition at SkyDome shortly before the deadline, Lee was the only Toronto player booed.58

Lee remained Toronto’s shortstop in 1992, albeit with a new uniform number. Griffin rejoined the Blue Jays as a reserve, so Lee returned number 4 to him and switched to 2, explaining, “He’s still my hero.”59 That season, none of Lee’s seven errors occurred on muffed grounders, and his .987 fielding percentage trailed only Seattle’s Omar Vizquel among AL shortstops.60 As the Blue Jays closed in on their third straight AL East title, though, Lee missed most of the final month because of a hamstring strain just above his left knee. Despite two cortisone shots, he was still limping noticeably when he tried to start for the only time in a 25-day span on September 11.61

On the final weekend of the regular season, Lee returned. In 128 games, he wound up with 50 walks and a career-high .343 on-base percentage, hitting righties better than ever before. “[New Blue Jays hitting coach Larry Hisle] gave me confidence,” he said.62 Hisle explained, “His game now is line drives and hard ground balls and don’t strike out. I couldn’t be prouder of anyone on this team.… When there’s runners on base and two out or one out, the players are confident he’ll come through. I know I am.”63

After Toronto split the first two ALCS games at home against the Athletics, Lee’s two-run triple with two outs in the seventh inning helped the Blue Jays take Game Three in Oakland, 7-5. Lee also scored an insurance run after walking to lead off the ninth. “Today, Manny was the star,” said Devon White.64 Four days later, when Candy Maldonado caught the final out to clinch the first pennant in franchise history, Lee was the first one to hug him, in left field.

In the World Series, the Blue Jays defeated the Atlanta Braves in six games. Although Lee went just 2-for-19, he singled against future Hall of Famer John Smoltz in Toronto’s Game Two victory. The Blue Jays closed out the series with an 11-inning victory on October 24. But Lee had been removed for a pinch-hitter in the 10th. When he threw down his helmet in frustration, it bounced up and hit a Toronto coach in the face.65

On November 4, 1992, Lee became a free agent. He signed a two-year contract with the Texas Rangers for $3.4 million on December 19.66 The Rangers had just learned that their incumbent shortstop, Jeff Huson, would miss at least half of the upcoming season following rotator cuff surgery. “I thought Lee came into his own this year,” said Texas GM Tom Grieve. “He was good enough to be the front-line shortstop on a champion team.” Lee acknowledged that he would miss some friends, but said, “I’m not really that sad about leaving… I feel really comfortable going to Texas. I’m happy they wanted me.”67

Lee’s 1993 season was a disaster. Mistakenly believing that he was Puerto Rican, the Rangers left Lee’s name off the list of players requiring visas that they provided to the U.S. consulate in Santo Domingo.68 Lee arrived 18 days late for spring training after the error was corrected.69 During his first week in camp, he pulled a left rib cage muscle in a basepath collision.70 Lee debuted in Texas’s ninth game, on April 16. A month later, he went back on the disabled list for 10 more weeks with a strained ligament in his left thumb. When Lee returned to the active roster in July, it was only because he refused to accept a minor-league rehabilitation assignment.71 Texas manager Kevin Kennedy summoned him for a closed-door meeting in August after two incidents that beat writer T.R. Sullivan said, “left [Lee] in disfavor within the clubhouse.” In addition to refusing to shake hands with his teammates after a victory over the Angels, Lee had argued with hitting coach Willie Upshaw during batting practice.72

On August 31 Lee was batting .168, but he finished at .220 in 73 games. “There was a time when he wasn’t playing as hard as we would have liked him to, now he’s playing hard,” said Kennedy. “I think you’re going to see a better Manny Lee next year than you did this year.”73 In the ninth inning of the season finale at Arlington Stadium. Lee allowed a bouncer up the middle hit by the Royals’ George Brett to roll into center field unmolested. It was the final at-bat of the future Hall of Famer’s career. “Before he make contact, I say, ‘If he hit it to me, I not even going to try,’” Lee confessed. “He’s my favorite player, always.”74

That winter, Lee returned to Dominican League action for the first time in five years. He appeared in just three games – two in the playoffs – for the Azucareros del Este and finished his career in his native country with a .283 batting average in 106 regular-season games, and .442 in 14 playoff games.

“Manuel Lee has been healthy and in a great frame of mind this spring,” said Grieve prior to the 1994 season. “There’s no reason why he can’t do the job for us.”75 To begin the year, Lee started 51 straight games – a career high – and batted .294. Overall, he appeared in 95 of the Rangers’ 114 games around a stint on the disabled list stint for a strained right rib cage muscle and hit .278.76 When the season ended prematurely because of the players strike, Texas held first-place in the AL West despite a 52-62 record. In October, the Rangers bought out the option year on Lee’s contract rather than pay him $1.9 million for 1995.77

When the strike was settled the following spring, Lee scrambled to find a team. On April 18, 1995, he signed a minor-league deal with the St. Louis Cardinals for $200,000. “I just want to be here,” he said. “This year is kind of tough for free agents.”78 Eight days later, Lee batted eighth in the Cardinals’ Opening Day lineup – playing second base alongside 40-year-old shortstop Ozzie Smith. In the top of the third inning, Lee sprained an ankle on a play on which he was charged with an error.79 In the bottom of the frame, he grounded a leadoff single off the Phillies’ Curt Schilling and came around to score. Then he left the game and went on the disabled list. Lee played six rehabilitation games with Class-A St. Petersburg and six more with Triple A Louisville before St. Louis released him on June 22 – five days after his 30th birthday. Lee’s professional baseball career was over. In the majors, he appeared in 922 games and batted .255.

Lee disengaged from baseball. In August 2004, he fatally shot a 28-year-old man who tried to rob his home in San Pedro de Macorís.80 A 2009 Toronto Star retrospective on the 1992 World Series champions said only that Lee was “involved in several small business ventures” in the Dominican Republic.81 Lee’s first wife, Magdalan, was from Canada, and they had one daughter. As of 2022, he is married to Purita. When a mural commemorating 21 former big leaguers was dedicated in San Pedro de Macorís in October 2021, Lee was among those featured, but he did not attend the unveiling.82



In addition to sources cited in the Notes, the author consulted,, and

Manuel Lee’s Dominican League statistics are from (Subscription service. Last accessed January 6, 2022).


1 Tim Harper, “Manny Lee Took the Baseball Road Out of Poverty,” Toronto Star, October 8, 1985: B19. The caption of a photo that accompanied the article identifies Lee’s father as “Ismael” in the Toronto Star Photograph Archives. (last accessed April 2, 2022).

2 Marty York, “Rodgers in a New York state of Mind About Next Job,” Globe and Mail (Toronto), June 19, 1991: C12.

3 Rob Ruck, The Tropic of Baseball (New York: Carroll & Graf Publishers, 1991), 138.

4 Harper, “Manny Lee Took the Baseball Road Out of Poverty.”

5 Sibling information was gleaned from Lee’s personal Facebook page. (last accessed January 6, 2022).

6 Harper, “Manny Lee Took the Baseball Road Out of Poverty.”

7 Toronto Blue Jays Official Guide 1992, 84.

8 1994 Texas Rangers Media Guide, 72.

9 Lee posted a photograph of the team on his personal Facebook page and tagged teammate Sergio Pérez, a Philadelphia Phillies’ minor leaguer from 1983-1986. (last accessed January 6, 2022).

10 Griffin was born in Santo Domingo but moved to San Pedro de Macorís with his mother when he was 8. Justin Krueger, “Alfredo Griffin,”

11 “Lee Shows Some Class,” Financial Post (Toronto), March 11, 1992: 36.

12 These figures appear in both the 1992 Blue Jays and 1994 Rangers media guides. Baseball-Reference lists Lee at 5-feet-10, 145 pounds.

13 Harper, “Manny Lee Took the Baseball Road Out of Poverty.”

14 Harper, “Manny Lee Took the Baseball Road Out of Poverty.”

15 1994 Texas Rangers Media Guide, 72.

16 Rich Miller, electronic communication with Malcolm Allen, January 5, 2022.

17 Marty York, “Rivals Ruffled by Jay Picks in Player Draft,” Globe and Mail, December 4, 1984: S1.

18 York, “Rivals Ruffled by Jay Picks in Player Draft.”

19 Jim Proudfoot, “Don’t Forget Trade if Epy Guerrero Suggests It,” Toronto Star, September 29, 1987: H1.

20 York, “Rivals Ruffled by Jay Picks in Player Draft.”

21 Larry Millson, “Jays Rookie Shows Stuff with Bats,” Globe and Mail, March 14, 1985: M9.

22 Harper, “Manny Lee Took the Baseball Road Out of Poverty.”

23 “Jays’ Dominicans Have Bad Time in Winter Ball,” Citizen (Ottawa, Ontario), December 19, 1985: D2.

24 “Infante Breaks His Collarbone,” Toronto Star, June 19, 1986: D6.

25 Howard Sinker, “Weak-Hitting Manny Lee on a Spree Against Twins,” Minneapolis Star-Tribune, August 31, 1986: 9C.

26 In Toronto’s 49 games after August 11 in 1986, Lee made 20 starts at second base, versus 17 for García and 12 for Garth Iorg.

27 Neil MacCarl, “Lee Leads Jays to 7th Win in Row,” Toronto Star, August 31, 1986: D1.

28 MacCarl, “Lee Leads Jays to 7th Win in Row.”

29 Larry Millson, “Lee Simply Wants Fair Play and Pay,” Globe and Mail, February 25, 1989: A19.

30 Marty York, “Lee ‘Fed Up’: Young Blue Jay Farmhand Angry About His ‘Up and Down’ Career,” Globe and Mail, August 25, 1987: D1.

31 “Jays’ Fernández Plays Despite Sprained Knee,” St. Petersburg (Florida) Times, September 15, 1987: 4C.

32 Tom Hawthorn, “Lithe Lee Fits Jays’ Needs Like a Glove,” Globe and Mail, September 26, 1987: E1.

33 Neil MacCarl, “Manny Lee Again Ready to Play as Alexis Infante Sent to Chiefs,” Toronto Star, June 22, 1988: C3.

34 Larry Millson, “Lee Shows Up in Camp Ready to Play,” Globe and Mail, March 2, 1988: A14.

35 Larry Millson, “Jays’ Lee Sparkles After Earning Steady Job,” Globe and Mail, July 25, 1988: C5.

36 Marty York, “Jays Fulfilled Rule to Letter, Union Tells Lee,” Globe and Mail, January 27, 1989: A16.

37 Marty York, “Infuriated Lee Breaks Serenity of Jay Land,” Globe and Mail, February 11, 11989: A15.

38 Larry Millson, “Cerutti, Lee Avoid Arbitration, Sign One-Year Deals,” Globe and Mail, February 12, 1990: C3.

39 Millson, “Lee Simply Wants Fair Play and Pay.”

40 1994 Texas Rangers Media Guide, 70.

41 “Lee Wants to Fly Blue Jay Coop Now,” Edmonton (Alberta, Canada) Journal, June 11, 1989: F1.

42 Marty York, “Friends Lee, Liriano Need to be Separated,” Globe and Mail, January 5, 1990: 13.

43 Millson, “Cerutti, Lee Avoid Arbitration, Sign One-Year Deals.”

44 Marty York, “Lee’s Unhappiness Makes Him Sure Trade Bait,” Globe and Mail, April 12, 1990: A17.

45 Tom McAllister, “Chance to Play Short Accepted Eager-Lee,” Ottawa (Ontario, Canada) Citizen, March 9, 1991: E5.

46 Marty York, “Batting Woes in Recent Months Cutting into Lee’s Sleep,” Globe and Mail, September 26, 1990: C14.

47 Marty York, “Now That Bell is Gone, Lee Does all the Talking,” Globe and Mail, December 29, 1990: A14.

48 York, “Now That Bell is Gone, Lee Does all the Talking.”

49 Marty York, “Fearful Lee Claims ‘The People in Toronto Just Want to Hurt Me,’” Globe and Mail, March 20, 1991: C10.

50 Allan Ryan, “Now Batting for Jays No. 4, Manuel Lee,” Toronto Star, March 10, 1991: G4.

51 Neil A. Campbell, “Manuel Lee Has Developed into an Effective Shortstop,” Globe and Mail, May 11, 1991: E14.

52 Dave Perkins, “Lee’s Walking Tall at Short,” Toronto Star, June 1, 1992: B2.

53 1994 Texas Rangers Media Guide: 72.

54 Larry Millson, “Sheepish Lee Admits He’s in a Fight,” Globe and Mail, March 2, 1992: C6.

55 As defined by Baseball-Reference, Defensive Efficiency estimates the percentage of balls put into play against a team that are converted into outs.

56 “Sheepish Lee Admits He’s in a Fight.”

57 Allan Ryan, “Lee Saunters into Camp Figuring He’s Still No. 1,” Toronto Star, March 1, 1992: G1.

58 Dave Perkins, “Lee’s Spring Moxie Outshines Dull Zosky in Shortstop Battle,” Toronto Star, March 18, 1992: F1.

59 “Lee Shows Some Class.”

60 1994 Texas Rangers Media Guide, 72.

61 Neil MacCarl, “Fly on the Wall,” The Sporting News, September 21, 1992: 31.

62 Rosie DiManno, “Now It’s Jays Over A’s,” Toronto Star, October 11, 1992: A1.

63 Neil A. Campbell, “Time Running Out for ‘Day to Day’ Lee with Knee Still Sore,” Globe and Mail, September 24, 1992: E7.

64 DiManno, “Now It’s Jays Over A’s.”

65 Bob Elliott, “Unlike His Predecessors, Manager John Farrell Has Fallout to Put Up with When He Sends in a Pinch Hitter,” Edmonton Sun, May 13, 2012: S22.

66 The contract included a $600,000 signing bonus and salaries of $1.6 million (for 1993) and $1 million (1994), plus a $200,000 buyout if an option year for $1.9 million was not exercised.

67 “Manny Lee Flees to Texas to Join Teammate Henke,” Vancouver (British Columbia) Sun, December 21, 1992: D4.

68 “Team-by-Team Notebook,” Orlando Sentinel, March 14, 1993: D10.

69 1994 Texas Rangers Media Guide, 72.

70 “Clemente Family’s Wishes Are Obeyed,” Salt Lake (Utah) Tribune, March 24, 1993: D3.

71 T.R. Sullivan, “A Glut at Shortstop,” The Sporting News, August 2, 1993: 32.

72 T.R. Sullivan, “Kennedy, Lee Clear the Air,” The Sporting News, August 23, 1993: 31.

73 T.R. Sullivan, “Lee Might Return,” The Sporting News, September 20, 1993: 30.

74 Berry Tramel, “Ryan, Brett Give Stadium Sendoff,” Oklahoman (Oklahoma City), October 4, 1993, (last accessed December 31, 2021).

75 T.R. Sullivan, “Short Depth,” The Sporting News, April 11, 1994: 25.

76 “Notable,” Baltimore Sun, June 25, 1994: 6C.

77 “Reds Grab Brantley; Henke Bought Out,” Edmonton Journal, October 28, 1994: F5.

78 Rick Hummel, “Lee Says He Is Ready to Play, but Not Second,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 19, 1995: 6D.

79 Kevin Horrigan, “Lately in St. Louis: Thar’s a Whiner,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, June 24, 2001: B3.

80 “La PN Someterá Hoy a la Justícia a Manny Lee,” Diario Libre (Dominican Republic), August 17, 2004, (last accessed January 4, 2022).

81 “Nesting,” Toronto Star, August 7, 2009: S5.

82 Manuel A. Vega, “Alcaldía de SPM Inaugura Mural de “Las Glorias del Béisbol Petromacorisano,” El Caribe (Dominican Republic), October 16, 2021, (last accessed February 26, 2022).

Full Name

Manuel Lora Lee


June 17, 1965 at San Pedro de Macoris, San Pedro de Macoris (D.R.)

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