Owens vs. Norris! Heavyweight matchup

Henry Owens has won eight straight starts....nine would be a franchise record.

Henry Owens has won eight straight starts….nine would be a franchise record.

What a treat for the fans at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium on Saturday night! Boston’s Top Pitching Prospect Henry Owens (12-3, 2.21) takes on Toronto’s top left-handed pitching prospect Daniel Norris…Last Sunday at the Futures Game in Minnesota, Owens got the start and worked a scoreless inning, on a hit and one strikeout. Norris relieved Owens, and hurled a perfect frame with one K.

With a win tonight, Owens will establish a franchise record with his ninth straight win, surpassing Adam Mills (2008)…In addition, the lefty will take over the minor league lead in wins with 13.

Norris’ lone win came at Hadlock Field on June 24th, fanning 10 batters over 5.2 IP…The lefty has 25 K’s in 17 IP this season in Double-A.

Former Sea Dog Mookie Betts was optioned to Triple-A before today’s game to make room for Shane Victorino. 

Pre-Game begins at 6:45PM on 95.9/95.5 and the U.S. Cellular Sea Dogs Radio Network…Listen online at seadogs.com.

Lineups
‘Dogs: Gibson 8, Wilkerson 9, Swihart 2, Coyle 4, Almanzar DH, Welch 3, Roof 5, Hissey 7, Dent 6, Owens LH (12-3, 2.21)

‘Cats: Pompey 8, Berti 4, Burns 5, Nolan DH, Newman 9, Crouse 7, Chung 2, Hobson 3, Flores 6, Norris LH (1-0, 4.24)

A few notes for today

REACHED 100: The Sea Dogs play their 100th game tonight, taking on the New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Blue Jays affiliate) in game three of their series at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium…Portland has dropped the first 2 games and their last seven road contests – their longest road losing streak since dropping 10 straight on May 11-31, 2011…Portland needs one win in the final five games against New Hampshire to win the season series…The ‘Dogs have been outscored 49-14 during their 7-game road losing streak.

THEY HAD THE POWER: New Hampshire hit three homers off RHP Jeremy Kehrt (1-2), and held on for a 7-4 win on Friday night…The Fisher Cats led 7-1 after four innings, scoring four 2-out runs in the first…Andy Burns, K.C. Hobson and Dalton Pompey each homered for the ‘Cats…LHP Matt Boyd (1-3) earned his first Double-A win, working six strong innings on five hits, three runs, one walk and six strikeouts…Portland had the tying run at the plate in the ninth, but Gregory Infante fanned Shannon Wilkerson to end the game…Pete Ruiz and Aaron Kurcz combined to pitch four scoreless innings of relief.

RANKING THE ‘DOGS: The Top 5 winning percentages (Full-Season Clubs) in Minor League Baseball: Low-A Kane County 64-33 (.660), Low-A Asheville 63-34 (.649), Low-A Savannah 61-33 (.649)  with Portland 63-36 (.636) and Low-A Greensboro 63-36 (.636) tied with the 4th best records…The Red Sox have the ninth best record as an organization in the minors at 259-231 (.529).

HEAVYWEIGHT MATCH-UP: LHP Henry Owens and LHP Daniel Norris are the top left-handed pitching prospects in their respective organizations…Owens is Boston’s top pitching prospect overall – Norris is third in Toronto’s system behind RHP Marcus Stroman and RHP Aaron Sanchez…Owens’ last start was in the Futures Game on July 13th in Minnesota, working a scoreless frame…Norris followed Owens and worked a perfect inning with one strikeout…With a win tonight, Owens will set a franchise record with his 9th straight win and take over the minor league lead in wins with 13 (Norfolk’s Tyler Wilson has 12).

KURCZ SO GOOD: Kurcz worked a perfect inning last night with a strikeout…The right-hander has allowed one unearned run in his last 19 outings: 23.0 IP, 12 H, R, 0 ER, 9 BB, 27 SO…Ruiz worked three scoreless frames on Friday, tying a season-high with five strikeouts…Portland’s bullpen has worked seven scoreless in the two games and lowered their bullpen ERA to 3.19.

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