Today in Tribe History: November 21, 1949

The Cleveland Indians are sold by owner Bill Veeck for $2.2 million. The new ownership group is headed by Ellis Ryan.

Ryan appointed Hank Greenberg as the club’s general manager. Greenberg had worked in a variety of roles with the team the previous two seasons after hanging up his playing cleats. Rudie Schaffer remained with the club as its business manager. George Medinger took over as the club’s vice president, with attorney Donald W. Hornbeck as secretary, Harry Small as treasurer, and Guy Waters as director of the Cleveland Baseball Corporation.

Ryan becomes the seventh president of the franchise in its 49 years in the American League.

Veeck, who had owned the club since purchasing it from Alva Bradley and associates (including John and Francis Sherwin) in 1946 for $1.25 million, needed to sell the club to pay for his expensive divorce from his first wife, Eleanor Raymond. The two had been wed in 1935. He would not be gone from the game of baseball for long, as he returned to ownership after marrying Mary Frances Ackerman and buying the St. Louis Browns from Bill and Charlie DeWitt in 1951.

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