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Matt Bush
Tampa Bay Rays — No. --
Pitcher
Born: February 8, 1986 (1986-02-08) (age 24)
San Diego, California
Bats: Right Throws: Right

Matt Bush (born February 8, 1986, in San Diego, California) is a minor league baseball pitcher who is currently in the Tampa Bay Rays organization.

Baseball career

He was selected first overall by the San Diego Padres in the 2004 Major League Baseball Draft out of Mission Bay High School. When he signed with the Padres, he received a signing bonus of $3,150,000, which is the second largest signing bonus ever given to a Padres draft pick.[1]

Bush was the first shortstop drafted first overall from high school since the Seattle Mariners took Alex Rodriguez in 1993.[2]

The Padres' selection of Bush in 2004 was controversial from the start. Jeff Niemann, Stephen Drew, and Jered Weaver were considered the top talents in the draft, but San Diego did not want to pay the premium bonus any of them would command as the top overall choice. Instead, they decided to take Bush, who was a talented high school senior from the San Diego area, but in no way near the prospect as the other candidates. The Padres' decision to bypass the top several prospects was widely criticized by baseball experts and fans in San Diego and nationwide.

Bush's pro career began poorly when he was suspended before he ever took the field for his role in a fight outside an Arizona nightclub.[3] The shortstop went on to hit .192 in 99 at bats between the Rookie-level Arizona League and the short-season Northwest League.

2005 did not bring improvement, as he hit .221 in 453 at bats for Fort Wayne.

During spring training 2006, he broke his ankle and missed half the season.

Bush struggled again in 2007, hitting to just a .583 OPS as of May 28. The Padres then converted the strong-armed Bush to a pitcher. His fastball reaches a speed of 95 mph, and he has prior knowledge of pitching from his days as a high school ace. After a promising start in rookie league, Bush tore a ligament in his pitching elbow and didn't pitch again until the 2009 season.[4] On February 5, 2009, he was designated for assignment to make room for Cliff Floyd[5] shortly after it was learned that Bush was allegedly involved in a drunken assault on a high school campus.[6]

On February 10, 2009, Bush was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays for either a player to be named later or cash considerations.[7] On April 1, 2009, Bush was released by the Blue Jays for violating their zero tolerance behavioral policy.[8]

On January 28, 2010, Bush signed a minor league contract with the Tampa Bay Rays.

References

  1. ^ Baseball America, Top 10 prospects 2009: LARGEST BONUSES IN CLUB HISTORY, http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/prospects/rankings/organization-top-10-prospects/2009/267514.html
  2. ^ "Bush selected by Padres with top pick in baseball draft", USA Today, June 7, 2004. Accessed August 6, 2007.
  3. ^ Center, Bill."Bush's suspension lifted", The San Diego Union-Tribune, July 21, 2004. Accessed August 6, 2007.
  4. ^ Brock, Corey. "Notes: Bush needs elbow surgery", MLB.com, August 18, 2007. Accessed June 5, 2008.
  5. ^ Jayson Stark (2009-02-05). "Source: Floyd, Padres agree to deal". espn.com. http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3885820. Retrieved 2009-02-05. 
  6. ^ Brent Schrotenboer (2009-02-06). "Padres cut ties with Matt Bush". signonsandiego.com. http://www3.signonsandiego.com/stories/2009/feb/06/1s6bush03277-padres-cut-ties-matt-bush/?padres. Retrieved 2009-02-06. 
  7. ^ Blue Jays acquire Bush
  8. ^ Jays release Bush

External links

Preceded by
Delmon Young
First overall pick in the MLB Entry Draft
2004
Succeeded by
Justin Upton
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