Luke Scott

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Luke Brandon Scott

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Biographical Information[edit]

Luke Scott-3251.jpg

Luke Scott was a regular outfielder for the Houston Astros and Baltimore Orioles before joining the Tampa Bay Rays in 2012.

Scott, who was born in Florida, was a star at Oklahoma State University before being drafted in the 9th round in the 2001 amateur draft by the Cleveland Indians. He was signed by scout Chad MacDonald and played in the Indians' organization in 2002 and 2003, then was traded to Houston for starting pitcher Jeriome Robertson, who was a bust in Cleveland.

In the minors from 2002 to 2006, he hit 113 home runs. With the AAA Round Rock Express in 2005 and 2006 he slugged .603 and then .541.

Scott came to the majors originally in 2005 for 80 at-bats, hitting .188. He batted twice in the NLDS against the Atlanta Braves but was hitless. The following year, 2006, he got 214 at-bats and almost doubled his batting average, hitting .336. He attracted attention with 10 homers and 6 triples in 65 games.

The following year, 2007, he became a full-time major leaguer, and slugged .504 for the Astros. Although he had many fewer at-bats than Lance Berkman, who hit 34 home runs, Scott's .504 slugging percentage was almost the same as Berkman's .510.

In 2008 Scott played for Baltimore after being included in the trade that sent shortstop Miguel Tejada to Houston. He started the season by getting 7 hits in his first 13 at-bats and set a career mark for home runs with 23, to go with 29 doubles and a batting line of .257/.336/.472. He was the Orioles' regular left-fielder, playing 106 games in that spot, in addition to being used 25 times as the DH. He was the O's most-used DH in 2009, getting 89 games at the spot in addition to 26 in left field and 10 at first base. He hit .258 with 26 doubles and 25 home runs, driving in 77 runs. He had another good season in 2010, banging out 29 doubles and 27 homers as the O's primary DH, with a batting line of .284/.368/.535, good for an OPS+ of 142. His production of homers has improved every season he has played in the majors.

Scott's season was shortened by a shoulder injury in 2011. He played 64 games, hitting .220 with 9 homers while playing left field and first base after the Orioles had acquired Vladimir Guerrero over the off-season to be their designated hitter. He tried to play through the pain, but decided to undergo surgery in late July, ending his season.

While Scott was a productive offensive player in Baltimore, he also made the news because of controversial political pronouncements. In numerous interviews, he indicated that he was a staunch defender of Second Amendment rights and carried a weapon on his person as often as possible, giving a sense that he saw the USA as a violent society where mayhem was liable to break out at any moment, and for which citizens should be prepared by packing heat. At the 2010 Winter Meetings, in an interview with Yahoo Sports, he stated that he refused to believe that President Barack Obama was born in the United States, and that the President "does not represent America. Nor does he represent anything what our forefathers stood for." Orioles management immediately distanced itself from his statements.

On January 12, 2012, Scott signed a one-year contract with the Tampa Bay Rays, worth $5 million dollars. He was expected to become the team's primary designated hitter. Showing he had not lost his gift for making controversial statements, on the eve of the Rays' first visit to Boston's Fenway Park - and the ballpark's 100th anniversary - he said: "As a baseball player, going there to work, it's a dump"; he added that the Red Sox should demolish the park and build a new state-of-the-art facility on its site. He played 96 games for the Rays 83 of them as the DH and 6 at first base - and hit .229 with 14 homers and 55 RBI. In typical fashion - for him -, he showed up in spring training in 2013 carrying the stuffed head of a wild boar he had shot himself with a bow and arrow. He played 91 games that season, hitting .241 with 9 homers and 40 RBIs. While he was the Rays' most-used DH that year, he lost his job down the stretch after Tampa Bay had acquired Delmon Young from the Philadelphia Phillies, and he did not play at all in the postseason. He struggled with various injuries both of his seasons in Tampa.

He signed with SK Wyverns of the Korea Baseball Organization for 2014, taking a significant pay cut, since no major league team was interested in his services. He hit .267 in 33 games, with 6 homers and 17 RBIs. He was back in organized baseball in 2015, splitting the season between the Buffalo Bisons of the International League (52 games, .240, 4 homers) and the Pericos de Puebla in the Mexican League (28 games, .292, 7 homers). Then after being out of baseball in both 2016 and 2017, he attempted an unlikely comeback at the age of 39 in 2018. He did not have a team willing to offer him a contract though, so he went to the special spring training camp for unsigned free agents organized that year by the Players Association but he failed to convince anyone to give him another shot.

Scott has also played winter ball in Venezuela.

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • 20-Home Run Seasons: 3 (2008-2010)

Related Sites[edit]