By spring 1991, though, that prospect label had gone, taken by injury, according to the Associated Press.
"He hurt it pitching in winter ball, and it's still there," Red Sox manager Joe Morgan told the AP early that March. "It doesn't look like he'll be doing any pitching for a while."
Owen ended up pitching again that year, but he didn't pitch much. He also didn't pitch much more in his career. His career ended with eight final outings in 1992.
All that came after the Astros wanted Owen or one of two other lefties in a deadline deal with the Red Sox in 1990. Instead, the Astros had to settle for Jeff Bagwell.
Owen's career began in 1988, taken by the Red Sox in the seventh round of the draft, out of Carson-Newman College in Tennessee.
At Carson-Newman, Owen left the school holding the record for most wins, 28, from 1986 to 1988. It's a record he still holds in 2014.
With the Red Sox, Owen started at single-A Winter Haven. In 15 outings, he had a 4.71 ERA. In late August, he threw a complete game, picking up a 6-4 win.
For 1989, Owen moved to single-A Lynchburg. There, he went 13-9, with a 3.26 ERA. He also struck out 107.
Owen arrived at AA New Britain for 1990. In 20 starts there, he went 7-9, with a 2.93 ERA. He also earned six starts at AAA Pawtucket, going 3-2, with a 4.71 ERA.
When the Red Sox decided to keep Owen, he went to winter ball, then injured his shoulder. In 1991, Owen got just three starts between Winter Haven and Pawtucket.
For 1992, he stayed back at Winter Haven. In eight outings, seven starts, he went 0-2, with a 3.40 ERA. It was his final season as a pro.
- Lewiston Sun-Journal, Associated Press, March 2, 1991: Marzano is finally starting to adjust
- Rob Neyer's Big Book of Baseball Blunders, 2006: Page 251
Made the Majors: 735 - 50.7%
Never Made Majors: 716-49.3%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors: 321
10+ Seasons in the Minors: 191