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Pirates fete Alvarez, Owens

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The Pirates named third baseman Pedro Alvarez their Minor League Player of the Year and Rudy Owens their Minor League Pitcher of the Year.

Alvarez hit a combined .288 with 27 homers and 95 RBI for Class A Lynchburg and Double-A Altoona. The 2008 first-round pick lead all Pirates prospects in homers and RBI.

“Pedro performed up to the lofty expectations placed upon him, showing a quality combination of power and patience plus improving defense,” farm directork Kyle Stark said. “He performed across two levels, raising his level of play as he faced tougher competition at Double-A.”

Owens went a combined 11-2 with a 2.10 ERA and 113 strikeouts in 25 starts for low-A West Virginia and Lynchburg. The right-hander is tops in the system in ERA and strikeouts and tied for third in wins.

“Rudy made significant strides this year, showing consistent fastball command and improving secondary pitches,” Stark said.

Owens will be recognized on the field before tonight’s game. Alvarez is in Italy, playing in the World Cup.

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