1. Josh Booty
For sheer notoriety, former Florida Marlins first-rounder Josh Booty stands alone at the top of our ranking. Booty was taken in the first round back in 1994 out of Evangel Christian HS, in Shreveport, LA with the fifth overall choice.
Booty played at every level of the Marlins’ system over the next five seasons. In 478 minor league games, he hit .198/.256/.356 with 62 home runs and 11 stolen bases in 22 attempts. You would think that his high position in the draft would reflect some spectacular fielding metrics, considering Booty’s pedestrian slash numbers. But no — in 443 minor league games at the hot corner he put up a .920 fielding percentage.
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But the Marlins were bound-and-determined to get something out of all this, and gave him a look at the top level in three consecutive seasons from 1996 through 1998. He totaled seven hits in 26 at bats, with four RBI, four walks, and nine strikeouts. Of his 25 fielding chances in the majors, he made four errors to post an 1890’s-ish .840 fPct.
So Booty left baseball, and signed on as the quarterback of the LSU Tigers for two seasons. He threw 24 touchdowns and 34 interceptions, completing less than half of his passes (49.3 percent). He was drafted in the sixth round of the 2001 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks. He later also appeared on the rosters of the Cleveland Browns and the Oakland Raiders, but never took a snap in a regular season game.
According to Fox Sports, Booty later won the reality TV series, “The Next Knuckler,” against his own brother, former NFL QB Doug Flutie, and others. His prize was an invitation to Arizona’s spring training, but as his rights were still technically held by the Marlins, they had first crack at him. Booty did not catch on.
What’s the Miami Marlins next bust in the first round? Hopefully, they won’t have another, but forever is a long time. Do you disagree with some of these choices? Let me know in the comments below.