Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays catcher offers support for Matt Bush, in town with Rangers

Matt Bush, right, celebrating with Jonathan Lucroy, and the Rangers visit the Rays this weekend.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS

Matt Bush, right, celebrating with Jonathan Lucroy, and the Rangers visit the Rays this weekend.

ST. PETERSBURG — RHP Matt Bush was working his way to reach the majors with the Rays when he made the worst of his mistakes, a serious DUI crash during spring training 2012 that led to him being jailed until last October.

But tonight Bush makes it to the Trop, pitching against the Rays as a key member of the AL West-leading Rangers bullpen.

Rays C Bobby Wilson, who was with Texas this season, said Bush has been impressive, as a pitcher (5-2, 2.83 in 40 games) and a person.

"Pure stuff, it's pretty amazing," Wilson said, "For a guy who obviously has his history to come back and be thrown right into the fire as a late-inning guy is pretty amazing. …

"I just hope he continues with the way he's been working, the way he's been listening, the way he wants to learn. Because at 30 years old and a rookie, there is still life in that arm and he can extend his career. I think it's great. I'm so happy for him. He's a good person. He wants to be there … just everything about him.

"He has a presence on the mound. Everything that he does shows me he wants to be the best he can possibly be and let go of the mistakes he's made and live up to his potential."

REVENGE-MINDED? After starting last season with the Rays, Wilson finished it helping the Rangers get to the playoffs and was with them this spring training. After a trade to and a month later from the Tigers, he was with the Rangers for a good chunk of this season until being waived (after the acquisition of Jonathan Lucroy) and claimed by the Rays on Aug. 5.

So facing the Rangers this weekend is understandably a cause for mixed emotions.

"Obviously I've built some pretty good relationships over there the past year, and I want nothing but the best for those guys," Wilson said. "But for these three games, I want to play well and I want to beat them. I wish them the best after these three days and hope they run away with the division. But I play for the Rays now, and I'll do everything I can to help this team win."

TO THE MATT: RHP Matt Andriese cruised to a 5-0, 2.82 mark in his first seven starts after his early May promotion. But he hasn't done well since returning to the rotation after a seven-week stint in the bullpen, going 0-2, 6.59 in three starts.

"I think it's been a little different," he said, going into tonight's test against the powerful Rangers. "More things were going my way early on but I'm still going out there taking the right mindset. It's tough going from the bullpen back to the rotation, I kind of got all out of funk a little bit. … It's a slight adjustment, it's just getting back into a groove pretty much."

SAFE, SORRY: OF Mikie Mahtook is an LSU product and an offseason resident of Baton Rouge, so he has been paying close attention to the flooding situation there. Mahtook said his place was fine, and his friends were all safe, but he feels for the others.

"Talking to guys that are living there now, they said it was pretty bad," Mahtook said. "I wish there was something I could do; I'm still trying to figure out how I could help."

REHAB REPORT: LHP Enny Romero (back strain) made his first rehab appearance for advanced Class A Charlotte on Thursday, throwing an 18-pitch 1-2-3 inning with two strikeouts. … OF Oswaldo Arcia (right elbow strain) was 2-for-5 with a homer and three RBIs for the Stone Crabs. In eight previous rehab games he hit .261 with one homer and four RBIs.

MISCELLANY: The Rays lead the AL with a 2.91 ERA since the All-Star break, through they are only 16-15. … 2B Matt Duffy (left Achilles soreness) and 2B Logan Forsythe (back spasms) are expected to be back in the lineup tonight. … The player development contract with the Class A Midwest League Bowling Green Hot Rods was extended through 2018.

Rays catcher offers support for Matt Bush, in town with Rangers 08/18/16 [Last modified: Thursday, August 18, 2016 10:07pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Fennelly: What's not to like about Lightning's start?

    Lightning Strikes

    BRANDON — No one is engraving the Stanley Cup. No one has begun stuffing the league MVP ballot box for Nikita Kucherov.

    The Lightning, with a win tonight, would match the best start in franchise history, 7-1-1 in the 2003-04 Cup season.
  2. Quarterback Jameis Winston will start Sunday for the Bucs


    TAMPA — Jameis Winston hadn't thrown in practice since he injured his right shoulder in Sunday's loss at Arizona, and with that uncertainty, a wide line of TV cameras and reporters' cellphones were all out Friday morning, recording the moment as Winston tested his shoulder with his first throws early in …

    Despite a sore shoulder, Jameis Winston will be making his 38th consecutive start since being drafted first overall in 2015.
  3. Bucs journal: LB Kwon Alexander ready to return from injury


    TAMPA — LB Kwon Alexander, sidelined by a hamstring injury since the second quarter of the Bucs' season opener against Chicago, will finally make a healthy return Sunday against the Bills.

    Linebacker Kwon Alexander needs “to get my stats back up” after being out since the opener.
  4. A rare treat Saturday for Rowdies: a home playoff game


    ST. PETERSBURG — Rowdies fans, set to be rewarded with their first home playoff match in five years, can also take a little credit for it.

    From left, Georgi Hristov, Joe Cole and Marcel Schafer are among the Rowdies’ top scorers.
  5. Why it's too early to give up on the Bucs


    Don't panic. It's not too late for the Bucs.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) and wide receiver Mike Evans (13) celebrate after the defense recovered a fumble during the second half of an NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., on Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times