Guy Bush, the “Mississippi Mudcat” from Aberdeen, finished his major league career in 1945 with some nice numbers: 176 wins (most ever by a Mississippi native), 542 appearances, 151 complete games. He also allowed 151 home runs, a total that happened to include the last two – Nos. 713 and 714 — hit by Babe Ruth. It happened on May 25, 1935, at Pittsburgh’s Forbes Field. Bush, who spent most of his career with the Chicago Cubs, was pitching for the Pirates. Ruth, who made his legend with the New York Yankees, was in his only season with the Boston Braves. He hit three homers that day in Pittsburgh, the first off of Red Lucas, who was replaced by Bush in the first inning. The last homer of Ruth’s career cleared the right-field roof at Forbes Field, the first ever to do that. May 25, 1935, truly was Ruth’s last hurrah. He played only five more games in the big leagues without getting another hit. Meanwhile, it was a tough day all around for Bush. He logged six innings in relief and the Pirates prevailed 11-7, but he didn’t get the win. Waite Hoyt blew the save after replacing Bush in the seventh inning.
Roy Oswalt, the pride of Weir and Holmes Community College, retired today with 163 career wins and a 3.36 ERA. Forget his struggles the last two seasons. Remember that he made three All-Star Games, twice won 20 games in a year and claimed the National League ERA crown in 2006. Oswalt was drafted by the Houston Astros in 1996 (23rd round), when the team still had its Double-A club in Jackson. Alas, when he reached that level, in 2000, the franchise was in its first year in Round Rock, Texas. Oswalt spent 10 years with the Astros and might’ve enjoyed his finest moments in 2005, when he led the club to its only World Series appearance. Oswalt won three games in four starts in the ’05 postseason. He made one start in the Series and got a no-decision against the Chicago White Sox, who won in four. Oswalt’s MLB win total ranks second among Mississippi-born pitchers, behind only Aberdeen’s Guy Bush, who won 176. Simply put, Oswalt is one the state’s all-time best.