Former San Diego Padres 2004 No. 1 overall draft pick Matt Bush has agreed to a plea bargain that will see the 26-year-old spend three years in prison in connection to a DUI hit-and-run incident, according to Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times.
The relief pitcher was a member of the Tampa Bay Rays organization when the hit-and-run accident occurred. He's spent over eight months in a Charlotte County, Florida, prison while awaiting the outcome of the case.
The incident in question occurred while Bush was driving on a suspended license and under the influence of alcohol. The young prospect hit the motorcycle of 72-year-old Tony Tufano and then fled from the scene.
Tufano suffered serious injuries, and Bush has been incarcerated since being arrested.
Daniel Bush, Bush’s father, told the Tampa Bay Times about how Matt was taking the news of his prison sentence and how his family is supporting the young man:
He's taking it pretty good. He's not crying or sulking. He's preparing for it. Everybody in our family is backing him up…It's a bad situation, but you've got to make the best of it. Life goes on.
This an absolutely devastating situation for all parties involved, but the hope now for the Bush family is that the young baseball prospect can use this as a learning tool and become a better man because of it.
Bush will be close to 30 when he leaves prison, so any hopes of a major league baseball career are likely over. With that in mind, Bush can begin the slow process of returning to society as a changed person.
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