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BeviBall!
08-18-2005, 04:30 PM
http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/minors/050818dish.html

maurice
08-18-2005, 06:21 PM
The article includes an extensive discussion of Jerry Owens:
[N]o one on the roster has meant more to the club's success this year than Owens, who skipped high Class A to go straight to Double-A out of spring training. Owens, who came over in a deal with the Nationals for outfielder Alex Escobar, has put up MVP-caliber numbers this year, primarily batting leadoff and serving as a catalyst for the rest of the order. The second-round pick in 2003 is hitting .337/.400/.399 with 43 RBIs in 439 at-bats.

"He could be the MVP of this league," Barons manager Razor Shines said. "He's definitely the MVP on this team, that's for sure. I'm not going to say we wouldn't be where we are without him because we have some talent, but without him we're not nearly as good. That's a fact."

After coming out of college, Owens battled through injuries during his debut in the then-Expos system. First, he ran into an outfield wall in his second pro game in the New York-Penn League, injuring his throwing shoulder. He required surgery to repair the shoulder and a pre-existing hernia, ending his first pro season with just eight at-bats. He bounced back from the injuries in a big way last year in his first full season at low Class A Savannah, where he batted .292-1-37 in 418 at-bats. Scouts have been down on Owens' ability to remain in center field, however, and some within the organization reportedly agree.

"He doesn't run great routes and his arm strength is below-average," a scout from an National League club said. "And offensively, I just don't see him driving the ball consistently enough to be an everyday player."

But Owens still leads the league in hits and runs scored, ranks second in average, fourth in steals and is in the top 10 in on-base percentage. No one expected him to skip high Class A and establish himself as the premiere leadoff hitter in Double-A--especially Shines, who clearly thought Owens wasn't ready for the challenge.

"I'm not ready to say he'll never be able to play center field," Shines said. "I'm not going to say never. With some of the adjustments he's made, he continues to get better. He hits three balls hard every night. He goes from first to third as well as anybody and his instincts on the bases are exceptional, which makes him that much more dangerous because of his speed. Defensively, his routes aren't that good. But he can get there. He's dominated this league. I'm not going to say never when it comes to Jerry Owens. I did that once already--I thought he'd never hit in this league. That shows you what I know."

Mr. White Sox
08-18-2005, 06:27 PM
Do you think he'll start next year in AAA?

Lillian
08-18-2005, 07:06 PM
This description sounds familiar doesn't it? Great speed, and base running instincts, no arm, no power, and doesn't take great routes to the ball.
That pretty well describes Podsednik.

maurice
08-18-2005, 07:32 PM
That pretty well describes Podsednik.

I was thinking the same thing. OTOH, he'll need to get his SB% up to match Pods on the bases.

Frater Perdurabo
08-18-2005, 09:46 PM
Is Owens a LHB or RHB? Anyway, good to see him doing so well.