For now Matt Bush remains on the Rays’ 40-man roster following his arrest on DUI, hit-and-run, and several other charges, but that may soon be changing.
Executive vice president Andrew Friedman said yesterday that Bush is “not going to play for us again” and indicated that the ongoing investigation might be the only thing keeping the Rays from simply releasing him immediately.
Bush, who was arrested Thursday while driving teammate Brandon Guyer’s car, remains in jail on a $1 million bond and the 72-year-old motorcyclist he hit is in critical condition with a breathing tube.
Bush’s problems with alcohol and self-control cost him a chance to make good on the Padres picking him No. 1 overall in 2004 and now they’re costing him a chance to complete what had been a fairly successful transition to pitching.
It’s only a matter of time before the Rays trade or, more likely, release him.
I hope you don’t have any plans tonight at around 10PM Eastern time, because that’s when we get a pitching matchup for the ages as Max Scherzer will take on Clayton Kershaw at Dodger Stadium. When they meet tonight it will be the first time two pitchers with three or more Cy Young Awards have matched up since 2006. That year, and in 2005 and 2000, Roger Clemens faced Greg Maddux. In 2001 Clemens faced Pedro Martinez.
Kershaw won his hardware in 2011, 2013 and 2014, with an MVP award in 2014 to boot. Scherzer collected trophies in 2013, 2016 and 2017. Each has started the 2018 season in Cy Young form. Kershaw is 1-2, but that record is due to poor run support. He has a 1.73 ERA and has struck out 31 batters and has walked only three in 26 innings. Scherzer is 3-1 with a 1.33 ERA and a whopping 38 strikeouts to only 4 walks in 27 innings.
This will be the third time that Kershaw and Scherzer faced each other if you include the playoffs. The first meeting was a decade ago when both were rookies. They most recently faced off in Game 1 of the 2016 NLDS, way back when Scherzer only had one Cy Young Award to his credit. Kershaw beat Scherzer in that playoff game and the Dodgers beat Scherzer’s teams in the two regular season matchups, with neither guy setting the world on fire. As so often happens in baseball, the hype hasn’t been matched by reality.
Still, there’s always a chance it will. And even if, in the end, this turns into a slugfest, the first couple of innings should at least give us some hope of something good. I’ll be watching.