He came out of Central High School where he was All-City pitcher in 1958 and an All-City 2nd baseman in 1959. He joined (1986) Hall of Famer Paul Rifes Post #209 team where he was instrumental in helping Paul's teams win 4 League titles and 3 Legion Tournament championships. He moved on to the Black Labels and played with those championship teams that represented Akron at the Battle Creek tournaments. He signed a minor league contract with the Philadelphia Phillies and played with Altoona, PA in the Penn State League. An injury curtailed his baseball pro career. Russ turned his talents to coaching in the North Hill Youth Leagues. He served as the Commissioner of North Akron Baseball for a good many years.