Loewen's Homer Only A Small Heartbreaker
People are going to look at the difference-making home run by Toronto outfielder Adam Loewen Sunday and make a tremendous deal about it. It’s almost too easy.
The former first-round pick of the Orioles left the organization nearly four years ago because of elbow issues and decided to convert to a position player. Now, in a cruel twist, he hit his first home run against the Orioles.
Indeed, it led to another Orioles loss. But, let’s be honest here. It was a late-season game between two teams that long ago gave up on their postseason dreams. If the Orioles were still in the hunt, this might hurt a little. Loewen has been trying to establish his career renaissance for years now and, late during the season, had his Hallmark moment. This isn’t a case of Jayson Werth, Curt Schilling or Jose Bautista, who went on to national acclaim. Loewen is a guy trying to hang on in a game he loves.
The Orioles invested in his arm, which began to suffer so many issues just as his Major League career was getting started. A healthy, maturing Loewen could have given the team some more security during years like this, when young hurlers such as Brian Matusz, Zach Britton and Chris Tillman have struggled for so much of the season.
Loewen's injury changed that vision and the Blue Jays decided to invest in his potential development in the field and at the plate. Not many other teams were going to do that. The Orioles couldn't imagine that. Sunday's home run is not indicative of something larger. Late during the season, there's always a guy who barely plays, but delivers a clutch hit. Unfortunately for the stumbling O's, it came Sunday.
The Orioles might play the "What could have been?" game with Loewen, but it has nothing to do with his ability to swing a bat.
Posted Sept. 12, 2011