Owens red hot for Indianapolis

The Indianapolis Indian's named left-handed pitcher Rudy Owens April's "Player of the Month" on May 5 after making four starts for the Tribe last month. Despite the four-game start, Owens took just one win while the other three games were no-decision ball games.

Nevertheless, Owens posted a 2.08 ERA in April. He also had an amazing 19-to-one strikeout-to-walk ratio. His ERA earned him a tie for seventh-best in the International League.

Owens picked up his second win of the season as the Indianapolis beat the Lehigh Valley IronPigs 7-2 on Tuesday night at Victory Field.

Owens (6.0 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 4 K) wasn't at his best on Tuesday night, allowing eight hits four of which were doubles to the IronPigs, but settled in shutting out Lehigh Valley over his final four innings en route to earning his second win of the season. It was the southpaw's first start since being named the Tribe's April Player of the Month.

Owens said that he has no secret to pitching well. He said that his only goal when he takes the mound is to throw strikes and have fun.

Owens started his fifth game of the season on May 3, while the Tribe was on the road the entire week. He pitched for eight innings and allowed just two runs from the Norfolk Tides. Owens had not faced the Tides since April 28, 2011. During that game, he suffered the loss after allowing six runs on nine hits, two home runs, one walk and two strikeouts. Still, the game on Thursday was another no-decision game.

Owens has spent his entire career within the Pirates organization. He was drafted by the Pirates in 2006 and was named the Pirates Minor League Pitcher of the Year in 2009 and 2010. Prior to the 2012 season, Owens was rated as the Pirates' No. 12 prospect by Baseball America.

According to him, pitching at any time of the day makes no difference to him.

"It [pitching during the day or at night] doesn't matter, doesn't matter at all," he said. "I'd much rather not pitch in the morning because then I don't have to wake up early, but overall, it doesn't really matter to me. It's not that big of a deal."

Owens said that his preparations for every start include the same routine each time.

"I just kind of do the same thing I've always done, just throw and stretch," he said. "I just go about business and get ready for the game; that all stays the same, but it's nothing special."

Owens started again on Tuesday. He said that his preparations were minimal.

"I really don't like to go about it in a serious way, like not talking to anybody," he said. "I like to have fun playing the game. I don't like to think about it too much, and I just do what I've always done."

Owens said that he has enjoyed the season playing for the Indians.

"I love it," he said. "We've got a great team and we're all doing well."

Looking ahead to the rest of the month of May, Owens said that his only goal for each game is to just throw strikes and play as well as he can. He said had no other predictions for the rest of the season other than just concentrating on his pitching and continuing to play well.

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