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Doctober? Pfft! Get ready for OctLoweber!

Oct 7, 2010, 10:30 AM EST

Was that convincing? Nah, didn’t think so. Sigh.

I started thinking about tonight’s Braves-Giants game a few minutes ago. I want to talk myself into Atlanta coming out of the gate strong, but I’m having a hard time really getting on board. My thought process: 

The good: Derek Lowe was 5-0 in September, with 29 strikeouts, three walks and a 1.17 ERA in 30.1 innings.

The not-so-good: Those starts came against the Pirates, the Nationals — twice — the Mets and the Marlins.

The good: Lowe is 5-1 with a 1.98 ERA in eight starts in AT&T Park, including a good one this year.

The not-so-good: He’s a groundball pitcher and the Braves have Brooks Conrad at second and Omar Infante at third. Conrad is bad everywhere. Infante is more comfortable at second than he is at third.

I guess a hot Lowe is all a Braves fan can ask for at the moment, but I think there may be more light than heat here. And I really just wanted an excuse to say “OctLoweber” again, because it’s all kinds of fun. Other random bits causing me nervousness:

  • The Giants’ ERA for the month of September: 1.78. Yikes;
  • The Braves outfielders that aren’t named Heyward are still McLouth, Melky, Diaz and Ankiel;
  • The Braves were 35-46 on the road this year, which is the worst road record among playoff teams;
  • The Braves bullpen is cited as a big strength — and it is — but the Giants’ was actually better this year;

I’m not trying to be overly pessimistic here. I’m psyched and rooting and all of that. But I figured I owe a lot of people who are accusing me of being a Debbie Downer about the Braves’ chances this postseason a bit of an explanation as to why I’m being a Debbie Downer.

But again: OctLoweber! 

  1. Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2010 at 10:41 AM

    Craig, “OctLoweber” is awesome. Don’t let anyone tell you any different. Here’s hoping the Braves can beat the Giants and we’ll have an NLCS for the ages. Phillies/Braves just has a much better ring than Phillies/Giants. Besides, there is no better way I can think of to end Bobby Cox’s career than sweeping the 4th game of the NLCS in Turner Field.

  2. Ace2000 - Oct 7, 2010 at 10:44 AM

    Octlincecumber!

  3. matt - Oct 7, 2010 at 11:02 AM

    Craig is just having a tough time of it right now. First, Frenchy helps the Rangers to a win in their opener and then doc throws a no-hitter for the Phils. Frenchtober anyone? No, thats horrible.

  4. Jonny5 - Oct 7, 2010 at 11:03 AM

    LMAO!! Octloweber!! Oswaltober starts Friday!!
    No one has any reason to be down about this Braves team, and if they win or not… The fact that they were able to extend their season when soooo many other teams did not, with as many injuries as the Braves have had is quite a feat in itself. I don’t expect them to come out of this over the Giants, but what they have done to get here is commendable in it’s own right. What i’m saying, is win or lose, get your fanboy gear out and smile, there isn’t any pressure to win, this season you’re gauranteed another week of Braves baseball. That’s alot more than the Cards, Padre, Rockies fans can claim isn’t it? The fact that the Braves have less pressure on them than the Giants do could weigh heavily in the Braves favor which might just mean a series win.

  5. birdmancometh - Oct 7, 2010 at 11:07 AM

    Thats great. You put his name right in the middle of the word! And it kinda still sounds like the orignal word!

  6. birdmancometh - Oct 7, 2010 at 11:08 AM

    Are you putting the Phils in the NLCS already? Just saying, they still need to win 2 more.

  7. Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2010 at 11:12 AM

    Yes, birdman, I am putting the Phillies in the NLCS. Matter of fact, I am already putting them in the World Series. So :P

  8. Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2010 at 11:15 AM

    I am sorry, but when did the San Francisco Giants become this juggernaut? Yeah, they had a great September ERA, but when it came right down to it, they were one game away from choking a 3 game lead with 3 to play and being forced into a 3 team playoff. Let’s stop making them out to be more than what they are…a slightly above average team. The Braves played the Phillies 18 times this season. They are well-tested and will win this series in 4 games. MARK IT DOWN!!! (LOL)

  9. mattjg - Oct 7, 2010 at 11:18 AM

    Yet I get dirty looks when I mention I’m honoring the Braves manager throughout Coxtober.

  10. birdmancometh - Oct 7, 2010 at 11:42 AM

    Ugh.

  11. Ace2000 - Oct 7, 2010 at 12:01 PM

    Hey dude, no need to mock. Just having a little fun. Where’s your clever portmanteau, hmmm?

  12. Jonny5 - Oct 7, 2010 at 12:05 PM

    They are no Juggernaut Chris, it’s just that the Braves are kinda wounded right now. Like more than kinda wounded actually. Enough for me to say they more than likely won’t win. If they didn’t lose very key players and pitchers, I’d be with you calling them to win, but ’tis not so.

  13. Mr. Heyward - Oct 7, 2010 at 12:07 PM

    Craig, you’re being a Negative Nancy, not a Debbie Downer. Now, stop it.

  14. CriticalCynic - Oct 7, 2010 at 12:08 PM

    So playing the Phillies is the ultimate mark of being well-tested, huh? How about being in an actual competitive race with THREE other division rivals (well, until August, at least, then the Dodgers kinda went quietly) for most of the year?
    The Phillies are good, but you’re making EVERYTHING about them, and that’s simply not the case.

  15. Utley's hair - Oct 7, 2010 at 12:35 PM

    He’s still upset that it isn’t Latosber.

  16. Utley's hair - Oct 7, 2010 at 12:46 PM

    So I guess the Mutts (along the lines as the Dodgers) and the Bravos don’t count? Okay.

    The Pads tanked at the right time for the Dwarves–who actually got a big assist from the Phightins’ fish fry (contrived reference to Friars and sleeping with the fishes, but I’m going with it anyway) at the Litter Box.

  17. Utley's hair - Oct 7, 2010 at 12:57 PM

    Hey, Craig, Heyward just called you Nancy!!!! You gonna stand for that?

  18. Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2010 at 1:19 PM

    Err…I live in Philly, am a Phillies fan, and have been making EVERYTHING about the Phillies since April. Do you think I am going to all of a sudden stop doing that when the playoffs come, and Halladay throws a no-hitter? LOLZ. No thanks. Regarding the Braves, I just have a feeling they win tonight and take the Giants hearts. I don’t want to say this too loud, but I like the chances that Cerrano hits one into McCovey Cove…but don’t tell Pedro I said that. Braves in 4. I’m sticking to it…even if Braves fans(re: Craig) don’t believe it.

  19. Chris Fiorentino - Oct 7, 2010 at 1:51 PM

    Or Oct-Gonzo-ber…Padres fans…LOL

  20. Jeremy - Oct 7, 2010 at 4:58 PM

    It’s funny, I’m a Giants fan and I see this one as an even matchup. The Giants hit a lot of ground balls and ground into a lot of double plays, something that plays to Lowe’s strength. I’m definitely not brimming with confidence, but I’ll be at the park tonight and am determined to have a great time.

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