The Today’s Game Era Committee considered a ballot of individuals whose contributions to the game were most significant from 1991 to the present. Bush and Nelson will be inducted at the annual Proctor Baseball banquet in June of 2024.
Bush served as Proctor’s head coach from 2019-2022. The Rails reached the Section 7AA Playoffs “Final Four” in 2021 and 2022 and finished as the section’s runner-up in 2022. Bush’s overall record is 40‒29 (.580). Nine players earned All-State Academic status during Bush’s years as head coach. Proctor’s baseball teams earned the Academic All-State Bronze award in 2019, the Silver award in 2021, and the Gold award in 2022.
Bush’s coaching career began with a 15-year stretch (2004-2018) as a Proctor assistant, primarily as the pitching coach, for head coaches Tim Rohweder and Kyle Wojtysiak. His involvement coincided with a rejuvenation of success. In 2004, his first season, Proctor posted a winning record for the first time since 1987 and won a playoffs game for the first time since 1995. The 2007 team reached the playoffs semifinals for the first time since 1986. The 2011 team gained a state tournament appearance for the first time since 1976. The Rails returned to state in 2012 and 2016, with a state third-place championship in 2012.
His ongoing amateur playing career began in 1996 for the Bayside Vipers of Superior, Wisconsin. He played for the Vipers through the 2006 season and has been the player/manager of the Lake Superior Sea Dogs, also of Superior, since 2007. He surpassed 700 career innings pitched between the two clubs in 2023. He holds Sea Dogs records for career pitching appearances (127), games started (89), innings pitched (539.1), and fewest walks allowed per nine innings (2.20).
Bush played three seasons for UW-Superior (1998-2000) and one season for Bemidji State (1996). His teammates selected him as the 1999 UW-Superior Most Inspirational Player Award recipient. A 1994 Proctor graduate, he played varsity baseball for three seasons and posted a 5‒4 career win-loss record as a pitcher. He led the 1993 Rails in innings pitched (38.0) and strikeouts (36).
He is the lead pitching instructor and site director for the U.S. Baseball Academy, a youth camp held annually at Proctor High School since 2005. He began service as an instructor for the Northland Foresters and Duluth Diamond Jaxx youth teams in 2023.
The 2024 Rails Baseball Record Book will be the eighth edition that Bush, Proctor Baseball’s “historian and statistician,” has compiled and written. He has also written about a variety of local connections to Major League Baseball for the Society for American Baseball Research.