Flashback Friday: Simley's Michael Busch Making Impact In Dodgers Org

Parker Hageman
Prep Baseball Report Minnesota

When Simley’s Michael Busch arrived at a showcase in June 2015, the left-handed hitting infielder ripped off a 96-mile-per-hour exit velo from the tee. After his performance in the event, scouts lauded him for having “upper echelon bat speed” and driving “baseballs with authority” to the middle of the field and to his pull side.

Power proved to be a big asset at the University of North Carolina.

In 2018, Busch's sophomore year at UNC, he hit 13 home runs and posted a team-leading .521 slugging percentage. Perhaps even more impressive was the fact that he struck out in just 9.7% of his plate appearances, demonstrating that you can have power without sacrificing consistent contact.

That summer, PBR's David Seifert got a look at him in the Northwoods League. Busch was somewhat of an anomaly in that he threw right-handed but hit from the left side, a trait that can occasionally damper a hitter's power potential. This, however, would not be an issue for Busch.

“Unlike many hitters who bat opposite their throwing side, Busch does not have a weak top hand in his swing,” Seifert wrote. “Credit his youth hockey days for this ability. He is up there to damage the baseball.”

As he entered his draft-eligible year, Busch received another glowing evaluation following a series against Xavier in February 2019. “A bit better athlete, Busch has a similar profile to Kyle Schwarber who was widely considered a first-round talent in 2014,” Seifert wrote.

Busch would be selected by the Dodgers with their first round pick in 2019 (31st overall) and saw limited action, playing in 10 games and hitting just one home run. The COVID season of 2020 wiped out minor league play. This year, following an invite to spring training, Busch was placed on the Dodgers’ Double-A affiliate, the Tulsa Drillers. There, the 23-year-old Busch hit 20 home runs for the Drillers -- 5th most in the Double-A Central League -- showing once again that his power has the potential to play at the next level.

Looking back to his high school days, as a senior, Busch ranked behind two notable players in the deep class of 2016: Prior Lake’s Nick Hanson (Reds, 2016, 79th overall) and Forest Lake’s Matt Wallner (Twins, 2019, 39th overall). Whereas Busch had plenty of tools and athleticism, he did not possess the arm capable of throwing 90-miles-per-hour like both Hanson and Wallner did. By moving him to second base, the Dodgers may have found a solution to his below average arm strength while still utilizing his overall athleticism.

Now a 2021 Future Game alumni for the National League and currently a Top 100 prospect according to MLB.com, Busch could become the first from a very strong 2016 class in Minnesota to see Major League action.


Michael Busch

Class of 2016 / OF

Player Information

  • Graduating Class: 2016
    Commitment: North Carolina
  • Primary Position: OF
    Secondary Position: 1B
  • High School: Simley
    State: MN
  • Height: 6-0
    Weight: 210lbs
  • Bat/Throw: L/R


Exit Velo


Michael Busch (6/16/15)

Previous Flashback Friday:

 Ryan Och

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