Owen Joseph “Donie” Bush
Born: October 8, 1887 - Indianapolis, IN
Died: March 28, 1972 - Indianapolis, IN
Career BA: .250
Managerial Record: 497–539
Detroit Tigers AL (1908–1921)
Washington Senators AL (1921–1922; player-manager: 1923)
Pittsburgh Pirates NL (manager: 1927–1929)
Chicago White Sox AL (manager: 1930–1931)
Cincinnati Reds NL (manager: 1933)
The epitome of a Major League ballplayer, Donie Bush was a very disciplined hitter with an amazing eye for the ball. Bush never hit for high averages, but was consistently involved in the offense. Whether it was a walk, sacrifice, or a key hit, Donie Bush always delivered. As a shortstop, few were better. Bush still holds the American League record for most putouts (425) and chances (969) in a season by a shortstop, and holds the Major League record for most triple plays with nine. He led the AL in assists five times. Bush was also a whiz on the base paths, snatching 406 stolen bases over his great career. One of the most respected players in the game at the time, many a manager wished they had Bush to anchor their team.
After his playing days, he managed in the American Association and then moved up to manage the Pirates in the National League. Although loaded with talent, his 1927 Pirates were swept in the Series by the greatest team of all time, the “Murderers’ Row” Yankees. That Pirates team featured the likes of Paul and Lloyd Waner, Kiki Cuyler, Pie Traynor and Joe Cronin, but they were still no match for the Yanks. Bush went on to manage the White Sox and the Reds, and later was both a manager and owner in the American Association.
While managing the 1938 Minneapolis Millers in the AA, Bush was very instrumental in mentoring a young player. That kid became known as “The Kid,” Ted Williams, and became one of the greatest hitters of all time. Bush continued in baseball until his death in 1972 at 84 years old. Known as “Mr. Baseball” in his hometown, the city of Indianapolis renamed Victory Field to Bush Stadium in his honor. A truly remarkable player and executive, Donie Bush is one of the highlights of the Cracker Jack Collection.
– Tom and Ellen Zappala, The Cracker Jack Collection: Baseball's Prized Players. For more information on their book and/or to order a copy at a special PSA discount, visit http://crackerjackplayers.com/PSA_order.html