Lowery served as the designated hitter and went 1-for-3 with a walk as his Billings Mustangs lost 2-1 to the Missoula Osprey on Sunday in Lowery's season debut in the Pioneer League. Lowery missed the first 30 games of the season at Billings — an advanced-rookie league affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds.
It's been a frustrating season for the left-handed throwing and hitting first baseman, who was drafted in the 24th round of June's MLB Draft after a sensational sophomore season at Young Harris College in Ga. Just before the season started in Billings, Lowery re-aggravated a hamstring pull that had bothered him late in the college season, and he had to sit out over 20 games due to that injury.
Just about the time Lowery was ready to return, he injured a bone running from his finger to his wrist while hitting in a batting cage. Lowery's hand hurt so badly he could hardly put his own shirt on, and the team feared a break.
Lowery was told the two most likely options were surgery, which would take four weeks to recover from, or rest and no cast, which would take up to six weeks. When the team doctor came in to see Lowery the following morning, he was able to move the hand and much of the pain was gone; it is believed that the problem could have stemmed from a pinched nerve.
The team has tweaked Lowery's batting stance since he arrived in Billings, having him close his stance slightly.