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|Bowden promoted to Wilmington|
Barry Bowden made his first appearance with the Wilmington Blue Rocks a memorable one, striking out a Kinston batter with the bases loaded and two outs in the fifth inning and earning a win for the Kansas City Royals' Class A Advanced squad.
"It was exciting," Bowden said. "I was a little nervous, but sometimes that helps you get the adrenaline going."
The Rocks got off to a fast start Sunday, scoring once in the second and twice more in the third.
Wilmington's only uneasy moment came in the fifth, as starter Danny Gutierrez began to show signs of fatigue as he walked a pair to load the bases with two outs. He was replaced by Bowden, who struck out Adam Davis to escape the jam.
"That was really exciting to get that strikeout and get us out of a jam," Bowden said. "It felt good to be put in that situation."
Bowden gave up a run in the sixth, but got the win.
"They had a guy reach on a bunt single down the line that scored a run," Bowden said. "That's big-time frustrating, but you put it behind you and keep working hard."
Closer Brandon Sisk came on in the ninth, and fanned a pair to convert his 14th straight save.
Bowden was called up from the Class A Burlington (Iowa) Bees on Saturday. The Vidalia native was 3-2 at Burlington with a 2.28 earned run average. He led the team with 10 saves.
"This is what you play for, to get called up to the next level," Bowden said. "It's a different mindset at his level, but I've played with most of these guys in Burlington and that makes it easier. It's nice to know they think highly enough of me to promote me to the next level."
The Blue Rocks' regular season ends on September 7. Wilmington is in first place in the Carolina League North Division, leading Potomac by two-and-a-half games.
Bowden was part of a Burlington Bees team that won the Midwest League last season.
"Hopefully I can be part of another playoff team," he said.
As for the end of the season?
"I really don't know where I will start out next year," Bowden said. "Hopefully I will be back here. I plan on going back and forth from Hattiesburg to Vidalia, working out. I'm just going out and doing the best I can do and see where it leads me."
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