Matt Bush makes his return to baseball


San Diego native Matt Bush was selected by the Padres with the first overall pick in 2004. He began his career as a shortstop before becoming a relief pitcher in 2007.

He signed a minor league deal with the Texas Rangers on Friday. The once highly touted prospect has had many run-ins with the law since being drafted by the Padres and was just released from prison two months ago after serving a 34-month sentence.

Not long after being drafted, Bush was involved in a fight outside of a bar in Arizona. He was suspended before his professional career even began. That was only the beginning of his troubles though.

On February 10, 2009, Bush was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays. He was released a month after though after he threw a baseball at a woman’s head. He was out of baseball the entire season. Right before he was traded to Toronto, he assaulted two freshman lacrosse players in a high school parking lot. He was allegedly intoxicated.

He signed a minor league deal with the Tampa Bay Rays on January 28, 2010. He spent time in their minor league system through 2011, but was placed on the restricted list the next season after he got drunk and ran over a 72-year-old man during spring training, which put him in critical condition. He was officially released on October 6, 2012.

In 53 career minor league games, Bush went 7-3 with 4.14 ERA. He also struck out 113 batters in 71.2 innings

Will Bush make the best of his new chances? It will be interesting to find out. At age 29, he is still young and can possibly make his major league debut sometime in the near future, but again he needs to show that he can stay out of trouble.

Besides Bush, only Steve Chilcott (1966) and Brien Taylor (1991) were drafted first overall and never played in the majors.