He was born in Waltham, Massachusetts, where the people affectionately called him ‘Buzz’.
Bowers was one of three boys born to George F. and Dorothy L. Harrington Bowers.
He attended Wayland High School in Massachusetts, where he played as a pitcher in baseball, quarterback in football, and forward in basketball.
Following his graduation, he received a baseball scolarship to Michigan State University, appearing primarily in a pitching rotation that included future Hall of Famer Robin Roberts.
Eventually, both signed professional contracts with the Philadelphia Phillies.
Listed at 6′ 2″, 170 lb., the right-handed Bowers played in the Phillies Minor League system in all or part of seven seasons spanning 1950–1954.
He attended his first spring training camp in 1950 with the Toronto Maple Leafs club of the International League.
He then made a good impression in an exhibition game against the Boston Red Sox, when he forced the great Ted Williams to ground into a double play.
While a young man with a promising career, he missed two seasons while serving military service during Korean War conflict.
Overall, Bowers posted a 54-44 record with a 3.38 earned run average in 239 pitching appearances, winning at least 10 games in four of his six full seasons.
He was solid in his last one, going 14-8 with a 2.93 ERA for Class A Schenectady Blue Jays.