|Video: Left-hander Henry Owens works in an intrasquad game||03.10.13 at 5:43 pm ET|
That three-pitch mix allowed Owens to overwhelm opponents in the Single-A South Atlantic League at times in 2012, his first full professional season. Among pitchers with at least 100 innings pitched last year, Owens led the minors with 11.51 strikeouts per nine innings.
He finished the year with a 4.87 ERA and 4.16 walks per nine innings, along with 10 homers permitted in 101 2/3 innings. Still, in terms of stuff, Owens’ three-pitch mix (along with an advanced feel for pitching, whether up and down in the strike zone or sequencing his pitches to disrupt timing) suggests a ceiling that can rival that of virtually any starter in the team’s system (save, perhaps, for Allen Webster, given the right-hander’s four-pitch arsenal and ability to generate high-90s velocity with sink). Whether he can command and find a way to do a better job of inducing bad contact (particularly groundballs) ultimately will determine how close Owens gets to that ceiling, but still, the 20-year-old has shown considerable promise at an early stage of his pro career.
Here’s video from the first of his two innings of intrasquad work on Saturday:
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