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|Bowden busy as a Bee|
After a whirlwind 2008 season, Barry Bowden is enjoying being able to focus on one task and is grateful for a bit of a break before reporting to Burlington Bees, the high Class A minor league team for the Kansas City Royals where Bowden finished last season.
"I think it definitely helped a lot getting a break," said Bowden, who went from being the No. 1 starting pitcher at Southern Mississippi early in the year to stints at Burlington, N.C. to Burlington Iowa. "My arm was able to heal a lot and I have picked up a lot of strength."
Bowden was clocked from 88-to-90 miles per hour in spring training.
Bowden faced three batters Saturday in Burlington's 3-2 loss to Clinton.
He struck out two of the three batters he faced, retiring the other batter.
Bowden entered Burlington's game on Tuesday against Kane County and got the save, pitching the final 1.1 innings and not allowing a base runner while recording two strikeouts.
Bowden pitched in the Class A Midwest League playoffs last season
The Burlington Bees won the Midwest League championship last year.
Bowden was promoted from the Burlington (N.C.) Royals short season Class A team to the high Class A Burlington (Iowa) Bees after the Royals finished their season.
Bowden left North Carolina with a 3-2 record and 1.86 earned run average. He had 40 strikeouts over 29 innings.
Bowden pitched 5.1 innings with the Bees before the playoffs, allowing two hits over two games, striking out seven and walking none while allowing no hits.
Bowden is one of five relief pitchers for the Bees.
"I struggled a little bit with my control in spring training, but I'm looking forward to getting some opportunties this season," Bowden said. "I've been anxious to get on the mound. I'm trying to fine-tune some things and just have fun and get comfortable on the mound."
Bowden learned how long a minor league season can go on last year.
"I know I am going to have my ups and downs and I have to deal with it," he said. "But I know what to expect and what to do in certain situations. It's really not a whole lot different. It's still baseball and pitching to a batter. I just have to continue to make the best of every opportunity I get."
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