2011 Top Pirates Prospects: #7 – Rudy Owens

The Pirates Prospects 2011 Prospect Guide was released last week, featuring 237 prospect reports, interviews with Jameson Taillon, Stetson Allie, Zack Von Rosenberg, and Zack Dodson, the 2011 top 50 prospects, and the most comprehensive coverage of the Pirates’ farm system that you can find. While the top 50 prospects are exclusive to the book, the top ten prospects will be released on the site.

Be sure to purchase your copy of the book by clicking “Buy Now” at the bottom of this page (or to the right).

To recap the countdown so far:

10. Colton Cain
9. Zack Von Rosenberg
8. Jeff Locke

We continue the countdown with the number seven prospect, Rudy Owens.

7. Rudy Owens, LHP

Owens saw his velocity increase to 90-93 MPH at the end of the 2011 season.

Owens was in the last draft-and-follow class, signing with the Pirates for $390 K. After less than impressive numbers in the lower levels, he became a breakout prospect in 2009, winning the Pirates’ Minor League Pitcher of the Year award the last two seasons.

A lot of the credit for Rudy’s success comes from his fastball command. He can locate the fastball wherever he wants, and saw a velocity increase towards the end of the 2010 season, with his fastball ranging between 90-93 MPH. Owens compliments his fastball with an above average changeup and a curveball. His changeup is possibly the best in the farm system, border lining as a plus offering, and he has picked up the curveball quickly, despite only learning the pitch in 2009. Owens has also worked on adding a two-seam fastball to his mix in the last year.

Owens has the chance to be a very special pitcher, with the upside of a number 2-3 starter. He has three average-to-above average pitches, with his fastball control being a borderline plus tool. Rudy works fast and attacks the strike zone. He could be in the majors as soon as June 2011.

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Tim is the owner, producer, editor, and lead writer of PiratesProspects.com. He has been running Pirates Prospects since 2009, becoming the first new media reporter and outlet covering the Pirates at the MLB level in 2011 and 2012. His work can also be found in Baseball America, where he has been a contributor since 2014 and the Pirates' correspondent since 2019.

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