Owens makes splash

Edison High star pitcher celebrates with friends and family after being picked No. 36 in MLB Draft by Boston Red Sox.

June 08, 2011|By Mike Sciacca,
  • Edison's pitcher Henry Owens is mobbed by his teammates after pitching a no-hitter against Santiago of Corona in a CIF Southern Section Division 1 playoff game at Edison High in May.
Edison's pitcher Henry Owens is mobbed by his teammates… (SCOTT SMELTZER,…)

It could be called the first summer pool party at the home of Mike and Julie Owens, but Monday's big splash wasn't planned.

It was spontaneous. Most certainly, it was joyous.

It happened shortly after their son, Edison pitching sensation Henry Owens, realized a childhood dream early that evening when he was selected by the Boston Red Sox in Major League Baseball's 2011 First-Year Player Draft.

What began with high anticipation that day at the Owens home turned into unbridled jubilation after former Red Sox great Jim Rice made the announcement on the MLB Network that the Edison ace was Boston's compensation-round choice (36th overall player selected).

Refrains of the Neil Diamond classic, "Sweet Caroline," a song that has come to be known as the eighth-inning anthem of Red Sox fans at Fenway Park, broke out among the revelers after the news came. While gathering for a group photo outside, Owens' friends tossed the young man of the moment into the family pool. His mother was next in. His father, and others, soon followed.


"It's the first time our pool's been used in a long time," Henry Owens said. "Everybody was singing and a lot of us were in the pool. It was incredible. Words just can't describe it."

Owens's father did find one word to sum it up.

"It was just surreal," Mike Owens said. "I can't think of any other word to describe the moment.

"There were so many friends and families in our house, families of kids who Henry had played with for years, from travel ball and later at Edison, sharing the moment. They all had a genuine happiness for Henry. As a parent, it was an incredible feeling. The past 24 hours has been amazing."

Henry Owens was dominant in going 12-1 with a no-hitter during his senior year, the only setback coming May 27 against Lakewood in the quarterfinal round of the CIF Division 1 playoffs. The hard-throwing left-hander had 140 strikeouts in 17 appearances and a 1.15 earned run average.

Ironically, Owens, 18, said he didn't hear his name called during the selection process. He was upstairs with some friends watching the draft unfold on one of the televisions in the house.

"The downstairs TV is about 30 seconds ahead of the TV upstairs and we heard this roar coming from downstairs," Owens said. "A buddy of mine, Kyle Jones, who played at Edison with me last year, sprinted up the stairs and tackled me. I didn't get to hear them call my name."

Henry Owens now has a decision to make. He had committed on scholarship to Miami back in late-October.

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