On Friday, November 30, 2018, our country lost an American hero. Former President H.W. Bush passed away at age 94 after fighting health issues for years. He served as the 41st President of the United States from 1989-1993.
Although many people know him for his role in politics, he also was a great athlete. He attended Yale University and played on their baseball team. As Yale captain and first baseman, he led his team to the College World Series in back-to-back years in 1947 and 1948.
While on the Yale baseball team, he competed against many great players. One of the best players Bush played against was Vin Scully, the iconic broadcaster. Vin Scully played baseball at Fordham and faced Bush in 1947.
During his time at Yale, Bush had a batting average of .224 with 1 HR and 28 RBI in 76 games on the team. He also met Babe Ruth for an on-field ceremony. Babe Ruth presented Bush with the manuscript for “The Babe Ruth Story” as a donation to the Yale Library.
When he was President, Bush kept his college first-base mitt in a drawer in the Oval Office in the White House. He wore the mitt when he threw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Baltimore Orioles’ home opener in 1989.
As Vice President under Ronald Reagan, he attended an old-timers game in Denver in 1984, where he was attending a state convention. Bush was 60 years old at the time. He played one inning at first base and recorded a base hit against former big-league pitcher Milt Pappas.
A regular fan of the MLB, Bush attended many Astros and Rangers games. In the 2017 World Series, the Astros faced off against the Dodgers. Before the start of Game 5 in Houston, Bush accompanied his son during the ceremonial first pitch. That would be his final appearance on a baseball field.
RIP to American hero and legend, George Herbert Walker Bush.
Photo Credit to Don Holston of the Associated Press