Billy Lush

From BR Bullpen

Billy Lush.jpg

William Lucas Lush

  • Bats Both, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 7", Weight 165 lb.

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Biographical Information[edit]

Billy Lush played seven seasons in the majors. His best years with the bat were his last two, 1903 and 1904. As a minor league team owner, he was partly responsible for Eddie Collins coming to the majors.

Lush was born in Bridgeport, CT in 1873 (and was the only major leaguer born in Bridgeport between 1865-83).

His debut in the National League was a cup of coffee in 1895. Sporting Life said that he overtrained the following winter and failed to "recover weight or strength during the playing season". Source: Sporting Life, November 14, 1896.

He played in the National League in 1895-97, getting most of his at-bats with the 1896 Washington Senators, a team with whom he was a regular outfielder. After being out of the majors for several seasons, he came back for seven games with the 1901 Boston Beaneaters and then in 1902 became a regular with the team. He was released in early 1903 and became a regular with the 1903 Detroit Tigers and then the 1904 Cleveland Naps of the American League.

During his days in the National League, Lush drew walks well and had some speed, but otherwise was a below-average hitter. In the American League, however, he did much better, as his batting averages improved while his walks and speed continued.

The New York Times of February 11, 1913 says Billy was "for a time in charge of the Montreal club".

He coached the Columbia University baseball team in 1914, Fordham University in 1916 and the United States Naval Academy in 1922 (possibly from 1916-22). A 1916 article says he also coached Yale University (1905-1911), and also states he purchased half of the Bridgeport club. Source: The Day (New London, CT), July 8, 1916.

The book Eddie Collins: A Baseball Biography says that Lush took some courses at Yale Law School. He coached at St. John's College in addition to the colleges mentioned above. He also coached basketball at several colleges, including NYU. The team at Plattsburgh (see below) had several Ivy Leaguers on it.

The book Connie Mack and the Early Years of Baseball says that Lush had operated a club in Plattsburgh, NY and another in Rockville, CT, and in both places had invited the young Eddie Collins to play on the team. Connie Mack asked Lush to bring Collins to meet him, and the rest was history.

His brother Ernie Lush, a talented semi-pro player, appeared in one game in the majors and also accompanied the New York Giants to spring training a couple times. Ernie was many years younger than Billy.

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