Starting for Pawtucket was right-handed pitcher Henry Owens.
Owens, 24, was ranked as high as the 19th-best prospect in the minor leagues (from MLB.com) prior to the 2015 season. He lost prospect status after pitching 63 big league innings last year, but he has not quite become a big league regular with Boston.
The team once again tried him out in the rotation this year, but his struggles continued. In three starts, Owens posted a 5.11 ERA (seven earned runs in 12 1/3 innings) and a horrific 9 to 13 strikeout-to-walk ratio.
After a disastrous six walk in three innings outing against the White Sox on May 5, Owens found himself back in the minor leagues.
On Tuesday, this is what I saw:
- Owens had a relatively repeatable delivery out of the windup; did not look like a max-effort windup
- Tried to dial it up with two strikes in the count; looked like he was pitching for strikeouts; this hurt his efficiency; Owens did not pitch to contact
- Hides ball well during both windup and stretch; he rocks forward and back as he comes set into the stretch; left balls over the plate with runners on base
- Slight change in leg kick based on pitch (appeared to be a tad higher on a fastball as compared to a breaking pitch)
- Fastball sat around 89-91 MPH; multiple breaking pitches; saw speeds of 69-81 MPH on pitches that looked like curveballs and sliders
- Owens seemed to get frustrated when he could not get the strikeouts; kicked the dirt at bottom of the mound; kicked the pitching rubber too
Owens' final line was: 5 innings, 5 hits, 2 runs (earned), two walks, 9 strikeouts, 100 pitches (63 strikes).