With the 30th anniversary celebration of the Minnesota Twins’ 1987 World Championship this year, we continue to profile the players!
The Minnesota Twins are working toward another playoff appearance after a long layoff, something that they did in 1987 before they won their first World Series championship in franchise history.
The Twins had a handful of players who were known for being quality role players for a number of seasons for the club, but perhaps none more so than a University of New Orleans product that spent a dozen seasons with the club…
Randy Bush was selected in the 2nd round of the 1979 draft out of the University of New Orleans. While he was a fairly high draft selection, he did take a bit of time working his way to the major leagues, spending 3 seasons with the AA club in Orlando. In 1982, he hit .325/.418/.563 with 14 doubles and 8 home runs with AAA Toledo to earn a call up to the big league guy.
Bush was utilized as a platoon bat in the outfield throughout his career, as seen by roughly 110 plate appearances total in his career against left-handed pitchers over a 12-year career and just short of 3,500 career plate appearances.
While he was lightly used before 1986, Bush saw things start to come together in that season as he hit .269/.347/.420 with 19 doubles, 7 triples, and 7 home runs over 402 plate appearances.
Bush began to get more consistent starts rather than time as a defensive replacement starting in 1987. He hit .253/.349/.413 with 10 doubles, 11 home runs, and 10 stolen bases over 349 plate appearances in 1987.
However, what Bush left his big performance on the season for the ALCS against the Detroit Tigers, when he had a .250/.375/.417 with a triple and 3 stolen bases in that series to help spark the Twins past the Tigers. He did only play 4 games and come to the plate 6 times in the 1987 World Series.
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Bush never left the Twins as a player, having his best season by far in 1988, hitting .261/.365/.434 with 20 doubles, 14 home runs, and 8 stolen bases. He followed with another excellent season in 1989.
After a down year in 1990, Bush once again showed his value off the bench in 1991, hitting .303/.401/.485 over 93 games and 193 plate appearances, primarily as a pinch hitter.
Bush retired as a player after the 1993 season with a .251/.334/.413 slash line over 1,219 games and 3,481 plate appearances, with 96 home runs.
Bush coached at his alma mater from 2000-2005 before taking a job as an advance scout with the Cubs. By the end of the 2006, he had been promoted to assistant GM in that organization, actually spending time as the interim GM from August 2011 when Jim Hendry was fired as GM until October 2011 when Theo Epstein was hired. Epstein retained Bush with a focus on the scouting and development department.