Owings thrilled to be back in postseason
Photo by Jordan Megenhardt
By Greg Dillard
Micah Owings gets chills just thinking about it.
The right-hander was a rookie in 2007. He appeared in 29 games for the D-backs that season, posting an 8-8 record with a 4.30 ERA.
Owings’ rookie campaign was anything but typical as he helped propel the D-backs to 90 wins and the franchise’s fourth National League Western Division Championship.
“It just gives me chills thinking about it back then,” Owings said. “Now realizing … how rare it is sometimes for some guys and some teams. I’m really fortunate and blessed to have the opportunity to be on a club like this that’s knocking on the door.”
Owings and the D-backs cruised to the division crown before meeting the Cubs in the Division Series. It was there when Arizona swept Chicago in three games.
That series sweep will always stand out to Owings.
“They had a great squad that year,” Owings said. “Winning the first two here, a packed house, great fans then going over there in a great baseball environment there at Wrigley and winning there.”
With that series win, the D-backs advanced to the League Championship Series where they squared off against the division rival Rockies.
Owings’ name was called on to start one of the NLCS games. He allowed two earned runs in 3.2 innings of work.
“For me, getting a start in the NLCS as a rookie rarely happens,” Owings said. “Looking back on it now, it was awesome to have the opportunity to be in that setting, on that team, and have fun with those guys.”
Now in 2011, Owings is back with the D-backs, and similar to 2007, the D-backs are enjoying a momentous run to the postseason. While it’s been four years since Owings participated in the 2007 postseason with Arizona, he still vividly remembers the Chase Field atmosphere.
“It’s nuts,” Owings said. “I remember the rivalry talk between Colorado and us after we clinched against the Cubs. I remember some of the smack talk going around. You always see the pictures of the towels in the World Series. The fan support for a club that’s not very old is pretty cool. We’re building a tradition here. I know we’re all excited about it, and hopefully they continue to pack it out and stay behind us because it helps.”
Baseball’s postseason is undoubtedly a high-intensity, electric time for the final eight teams involved. For Owings, it’s about continuity and playing D-backs baseball during the playoffs.
“I think just continuing to play the game that got you there,” Owings said. “Guys continuing to just play the game and not getting too caught up in trying to do too much. Anything can happen once you get there. So just to continue to play the game that we play all year to get there and see what happens.”
Heading into Friday night’s series opener against the Giants, Arizona needed just one victory to clinch the division crown – a win they got hours later to seal the team’s fifth NL West title.
The D-backs will conclude the regular season on Wednesday against the Dodgers before beginning the Division Series on Oct. 1. Although the playoffs are a high intensity environment, Owings hopes to stay relaxed and do anything he can to help his team.
“Adrenaline kicks in sometimes,” Owings said. “You’ve got to remind yourself ‘alright, this is what got us to this point or me to where I am to help out.’ I’ve just got to focus on that again and take a deep breath and get back in control of things.”