Nick Buss

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Nicholas Gregory Buss

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Biographical Information[edit]

Nick Buss made it to the major leagues in 2013, and returned in 2016. He is one of relatively few players to appear for both the Los Angeles Dodgers and the other local team, the Los Angeles Angels.

Buss was All-State as a high school senior. In junior college, he hit .382 to lead the squad as a freshman. The next year, the Los Angeles Dodgers took him in the 35th round of the 2006 amateur draft. He hit .290/.378/.393 as a junior after transferring to USC. With the Peninsula Oilers, he led the Alaska Baseball League that summer in triples (5), steals (29) and average (.369). He was named to the league All-Star team. His senior year at USC, Nick produced at a .296/.415/.472 clip with 51 runs and 16 steals (in 23 tries) over 56 games. He tied Brett Wallace for 4th in the Pac-10 Conference in swipes but led in times caught stealing. The Dodgers, still interested, chose him in the 8th round of the 2008 amateur draft; the scout was Bobby Darwin. The next three players selected would also wind up in the majors: Erik Komatsu, Evan Crawford and Brett Oberholtzer.

Buss made his pro debut with the 2008 Ogden Raptors and batted .279/.373/.500. With the Great Lakes Loons a year later, he hit .260/.298/.392 with 14 steals in 17 tries. He showed progress in 2010 with the Loons (.285/.358/.351 in 61 G) and Inland Empire 66ers (.243/.280/.332 in 65 G), with 74 runs, 8 triples and 26 steals in 34 attempts. Among Dodger farmhands, he was 7th in swipes and tied Christian Lara for second in three-baggers (2 behind Dee Gordon). He was 10 for 27 with 7 RBI in six playoff games as well.

In 2011, Buss continued to develop, hitting .328/.369/.511 with 30 doubles, 8 triples, 28 steals in 38 tries and 86 runs for the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes. In the California League, he was 5th in average (between Kent Matthes and Kole Calhoun), 8th in slugging (between Josh Rutledge and Matt Long), 1st in sacrifice hits (15), 8th in hits (157, between Austin Wates and Nolan Arenado), 7th in triples and tied for 9th in steals (with Grant Hogue). In the Dodger chain, he was second to Scott Van Slyke in average, tied for 4th in triples and tied with Leon Landry for 4th in stolen bases.

The Michigan native hit .272/.328/.411 with 10 triples and 70 runs for the '12 Chattanooga Lookouts. He tied Hak-Ju Lee for third in the Southern League in triples (behind Jared Mitchell and Logan Watkins), tied Kyle Jensen for 9th in runs, 1st in sacrifice hits (19), was 3rd in times caught stealing (13, behind Josh Prince and Billy Hamilton, both of whom had many more steals than Nick's 19). He tied Elian Herrera for the most triples by a Dodgers minor leaguer while he also was 8th in runs, between Tim Federowicz and Blake Smith. He also registered 16 outfield assists while only making four errors.

Buss hit .303/.363/.525 with 11 triples, 17 home runs, 84 runs, 100 RBI and 21 steals while only being caught twice for the 2013 Albuquerque Isotopes. He was among the LA minor league leaders in runs (2nd to Scott Schebler), doubles (tied for 4th with 29), triples (3rd behind Darnell Sweeney and Schebler), homers (tied for 5th with Chris Jacobs), RBI (1st, 9 ahead of Schebler) and slugging (second to Schebler). He was 4th in the 2013 PCL in slugging (after Corey Dickerson, Brock Peterson and Wilmer Flores), 1st in RBI (11 more than Michael Choice and Ryan Wheeler), 2nd in triples (3 behind Dickerson), third in total bases (241, after MVP Chris Owings and Peterson) and 6th in runs. He made the PCL All-Star outfield alongside Dickerson and Choice.

The Dodgers then made him a September call-up in 2013. In his major league debut on September 14th, he replaced Carl Crawford early in a 19-3 blowout loss to the San Francisco Giants. Pinch-hitting for Crawford with LA already down 8-1 in the 3rd, he flew out against Tim Lincecum then stayed in the game to play left field. He singled off Lincecum in the 5th for his first major league hit and grounded out while facing Heath Hembree in the 7th to end the day 1 for 3. he went 2 for 19 (.105) in his first taste of the Show, then did not return until 2016, when the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim gave him a look-see in August. He had already matched his career hit total after two games, and on August 15th, he collected his first career RBI when his opposite-field double off Felix Hernandez of the Seattle Mariners drove in Cliff Pennington in the 1st inning.

"Buss led the Pacific Coast League in runs batted in this season, batting .303 with 100 RBIs in 131 games at triple-A Albuquerque." - from an article titled 'Dodgers' Nick Buss a Hit in Major League Debut' in the L.A. Times, September 15, 2013 [1]

"Days after helping the El Paso Chihuahuas clinch their third consecutive playoff berth, outfielder Nick Buss has won the 2017 Pacific Coast League batting title, the League office announced Tuesday. Buss is the first El Paso player to accomplish the feat in Chihuahuas’ history." - from an article in the El Paso Herald-Post [2]


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