READING, Pa. – Henry Owens showed why he’s considered the top pitching prospect in the Boston Red Sox organization as he fired six no-hit innings in the Portland Sea Dogs rain-shortened 5-0 win over the Reading Fightin Phils Thursday night.
The game was stopped after the sixth and did not resume.
Owens became the first Sea Dogs pitcher to post a solo no-hitter. Brad Penny, in 1999, and Josh Beckett, in 2001, each started combination nine-inning no-hit games.
Owens was backed by a dazzling Double-A debut by second baseman Mookie Betts, who opened the game with a home run and finished 4-for-4 with three runs scored.
Owens showed at the end of last season that he could dominate at the Double-A level, when he posted a 1.78 ERA in six starts with the Sea Dogs. The 22-year-old lefty was at his best at Reading¹s FirstEnergy Stadium, as he struck out nine and retired the final 16 batters he faced.
Owens walked two of the first four batters he faced, then went about mowing down the Fightin Phils.
He was backed by several notable defensive plays, the best by Betts, who drifted back into shallow center and make a leaping stab on Carlos Alonso¹s looping liner to take a hit away.
Third baseman Sean Coyle also made an outstanding play, charging speedy Zach Collier¹s third-inning bunt attempt and retiring him with a bare-handed pickup.
Penny teamed with Luis Arroyo for the club¹s first no-hitter, a 3-0 win over Trenton.
Beckett combined with Brandon Bowe and Aaron Scheffer in a 5-0 win over Binghamton.