After completing jail sentence, Matt Bush signs minor league deal with Rangers

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We noted back in October that 2004 No. 1 overall pick Matt Bush was released from prison after serving nearly three years in jail for severely injuring a 72-year-old man while driving drunk. Speculating on his baseball future was secondary at the time, but the Rangers announced yesterday that they signed the 29-year-old to a minor league contract.

Bush hasn’t played since 2011, but Thomas Harding of reports that he was clocked at 95 mph during recent bullpen sessions. The Rangers intend to have a zero-tolerance policy with him in regard to alcohol and driving. His father, Danny, must also live with him during spring training and the season. Bush appears determined to turn his life around and make the most out of his second chance.

“My dad has always cared for me, no matter what. All the issues that I’d had, all the struggles, the pain that I’ve put him and my mom and my family through, as well. I went to his retirement party just the other day, and the people at his work, they say, ‘We seem to know all about you.’ My dad tells them the good and the bad. I appreciate and see that he cares for me, and I respect him for that.”

“My future is as bright as I make it,” Bush said. “I feel renewed after all the time I served and had time to think things through — the agony of destroying my life and the lives of others.”

Bush is aiming to make the Rangers’ Double-A affiliate in Frisco, Texas.

Guardians trade OF Will Benson to Reds for OF Justin Boyd

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

CLEVELAND – The Cleveland Guardians traded outfielder Will Benson to the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday for outfielder Justin Boyd.

The defending AL Central champions also will get a player to be named from the Reds in the swap.

Cincinnati drafted Boyd in the second round last year out of Oregon State. He led the Pac-12 with a .373 batting average and 24 steals in 2022. The 21-year-old batted .203 in 73 at-bats for Class-A Daytona.

The 6-foot-5 Benson spent 28 games with the Guardians last season, batting .182 with three RBIs in 28 games. The 24-year-old struggled at the plate, striking out 19 times in just 55 at-bats.

Benson was once considered one of Cleveland’s top outfield prospects, but has since been surpassed by Steven Kwan, Oscar Gonzalez and Will Brennan.