Today in Tribe History: March 18, 1957

Cleveland general manager Hank Greenberg rejects a deal offered by Boston that would have sent the Indians’ 23-year-old pitcher Herb Score to the Red Sox for $1 million.

The deal, thought to be the largest such offer to date in Major League Baseball history, was refused by Greenberg, who wanted to build for the future and not sell off his best players. The southpaw Score had led the American League for the second consecutive season with a career-high 263 strikeouts in 1956.

“It is true. We tried to make a deal with Cleveland,” said Boston general manager Joe Cronin in a quote in the March 19, 1957, edition of The Plain Dealer. “We tried every combination and haven’t been able to work anything out. Finally I said to Hank Greenberg, there’s only one thing I can do. That is to offer you a million dollars for Herb Score. Take that to your board of directors.”

The 1955 AL Rookie of the Year won 20 games in just his second season and was selected to the All-Star team in each of his two years in Cleveland, but he would make just five appearances in 1957 before being struck by a line drive off of the bat of New York’s Gil McDougald in the second at bat of the game on May 7.

Score would never be the same after that. He did not pitch again until 1958 and was limited to 12 games (and only one start after April 30). He returned to form to some degree in 1959, going 9-11 with 147 strikeouts in 30 games, but had a then career-high 4.71 ERA with 14 wild pitches. He was dealt to the White Sox at the start of the 1960 season for Barry Latman and spent three seasons in Chicago, playing 35 games with a 6-12 record and a 4.25 ERA.

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