Ky Bush has been well-traveled already. He went from 40th round pick out of High School to Washington State to Central Arizona College and finally to St. Mary’s. Struggling at his first couple of stops, Bush has found success this season and has put himself firmly in the top 100. Let’s take a look at the Gaels’ big southpaw.
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Ky Bush, LHP, St. Mary’s
Weight: 240 lbs.
2019: 19 G (9 starts) – 0-5, 12.69 ERA, 39/21 K/BB rate in 39 IP (Washington State)
2020: 7 G – 5-1, 2.43 ERA, 43/19 K/BB rate in 33.1 IP (Central Arizona)
2021: 14 G – 7-5, 2.99 ERA, 112/19 K/BB rate in 78.1 IP (St. Mary’s)
As you can see from the stats above, Bush’s college career didn’t start out well. He went to Central Arizona and cleaned up some things. The refinement worked and the St. Mary’s ace could be looking at a second or third-round selection this month.
Bush’s fastball is his main weapon and he commands it well at the top of the zone. The pitch sits around 94 mph and can touch 96. It has good riding life which will induce plenty of popups and empty swings. Bush has an above-average slider which is a little like a slurve, having more downward bite to it than your typical slider. It is an effective weapon and he hides it well making it difficult for hitters to pick it up.
The big lefty has improved his command, especially on his two main offerings. He has cleaned up his delivery a bit and made it more repeatable. It is still deceptive as Bush holds the ball behind his body until the last second and then fires from a high arm slot. At 6-foot-6 it gives his pitches even more perceived break. He has a big body and looks to be built for workhorse innings.
If Bush wants to be in a rotation, he will need at least one more useable weapon. His curveball is decent, but he doesn’t have great feel for it and telegraphs it somewhat at this point. His changeup is a work in progress as he really didn’t throw it much in college. Some scouts believe Bush would be better out of the bullpen where he can hone his two best pitches and go all out for an inning. Others believe if he can get his offspeed stuff to at least average, he can be an effective starter and log innings as a three or four.
Pro Comparison: CC Sabathia
The left-handedness and size are two distinct similarities that anyone can see. Their pitching styles are also very much alike. In his prime, Sabathia was firing his fastball and slider combo around 80 percent of the time with the heater checking in at around 94 mph on average. Later in his career, he went more to a cutter and also employed a changeup. Bush has the same stuff at this point and as I mentioned, if he can improve his change or curve to be at least an average pitch, he could be a very good addition to any rotation.
Draft Projection: Round 2, Pick 55, New York Yankees
The Yankees obviously love the big guys. Bush will be a solid pick here if he is still on the board. Whether New York gets him to the majors as a middle-of-the-rotation workhorse or as a potential dominating reliever, they will have made an excellent choice. The floor is solid and the upside is another large southpaw following in the footsteps of Andy Pettitte and CC taking the mound in the Bronx.
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Main Image Credit: https://smcgaels.com/sports/baseball/roster/ky-bush/2551