Detroit Tigers: Eyebrow-Raising Transactions #10-1
5. Heinie Manush
Manush played for the Tigers for five years in the 1920s. While many of the memories surrounding Manush are long gone, the story of his trade has been recorded for posterity. Manush became a Hall of Fame player, but not with the Tigers. At the time that Manush played with the Tigers, the Rookie of the Year award did not exist, but with his performance in 1923 could have earned him the award.
His teammates in his first few years included Tigers icons like Ty Cobb and Bobby Veach. So, he was able to learn from the best in the business. Unfortunately, after five seasons, Manush was traded away after Cobb left and Manush did not like the new Tigers manager, George Moriarty. Manush’s 1927 season with Detroit was one of his worst. He and another player were sent to the St. Louis Browns for three players who were not especially memorable.
Manush then improved to a Hall of Fame career. He had a handful of seasons with an OPS above .900. He hit 110 home runs, during the Dead Ball Era. He also earned a few batting titles for hits, doubles, and triples. This was a mistaken trade by the Tigers, who should have done everything they could to retain Manush to make him a Tiger for life.