10/09/2007 1:33 PM ET
Owings can pitch or hit for D-backs
Micah Owings isn't sure whether his first postseason appearance will come as a pitcher or a pinch-hitter.
Owings, who earned the No. 4 spot in the Diamondbacks' playoff rotation following a strong rookie year, also pinch-hit six times during the regular season and put up impressive numbers during his limited at-bats. He wasn't called into action during the D-backs' Division Series sweep of the Cubs.
"I do wear my spikes every day in case I get asked to pinch-hit," Owings told MLBPLAYERS.com in the latest Players Talk show.
The 25-year-old right-hander from Georgia was 8-8 over 29 appearances, including 27 starts, with a 4.30 ERA and 106 strikeouts in 152 2/3 innings. But he also turned heads with his prodigious bat.
On Aug. 18 in Atlanta, Owings had one of the best offensive games by a pitcher in recent memory, going 4-for-5 with a double, two home runs and six RBIs. It wasn't a fluke. On Sept. 27 in Pittsburgh, he went 4-for-4 with three doubles and three RBIs.
Owings finished the regular season with a .333 average, .349 on-base average, four homers and 15 RBIs for the Diamondbacks.
Owings was always a good hitter. He didn't begin pitching until he was 12 and always played a position when he wasn't on the mound, even when he got to college at Georgia Tech and Tulane.
Now he tries to keep things simple, knowing too many thoughts going through his head won't help when he goes up to bat.
"When I get into the box, I just try to clear everything and remember that anything I do is a positive for the team and nobody's expecting the pitcher to do much," Owings said. "So I take that to my advantage."
Owings is taking a similar approach to ward off any anxiety that might surface in the postseason.
"I talk to Tony Clark quite a bit and he keeps reminding me to control the controllable," Owings said.