Poll: Should Braves start Lowe in playoffs (if they make it)?

Derek Lowe wasn't awful Wednesday. Would you want to see him in playoffs?

Derek Lowe wasn't awful Wednesday. Would you want to see him in playoffs?

When the Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez went to the bullpen at Florida Wednesday night, play-by-play announcer Chip Caray said, “Pitching change for Atlanta. Derek Lowe did not pitch poorly.”

Interesting choice of words. Then again, it seems this qualifies as news.

After allowing 15 earned runs and 26 hits in 13.1 innings over his last three starts, Lowe didn’t stink against the Marlins. He allowed three runs and six hits in 6.1 innings. It wasn’t Cy Young, but it wasn’t bad Vaudeville, either.

Who should be Braves' third starter in playoffs?

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So here’s the thing. Last season, I made the mistake of writing off Lowe — for which he never let me forget — and he ended up becoming the Braves’ best pitcher down the stretch and in the postseason. This year, he has been a mess. But minus Tommy Hanson and Jair Jurrjens, the team needs a third starter for the playoffs, assuming they make the playoffs, and, yes, I realize that’s a dangerous assumption. (The Braves lost to the Marlins 4-0, St. Louis defeated the Mets 6-5 and suddenly the wild card lead is down to 1½ games.)

Bit if they make it, here’s the question: Do the Braves start Lowe?

For the sake of this argument, let’s assume Jurrjens will not be available for the wild card round (safe assumption) and Hanson will still be rehabilitating from a shoulder injury (50-50). That leaves Tim Hudson and Brandon Beachy as the logical Nos. 1 and 2 starters.

Your choices for the No. 3 starter: Lowe (9-16, 4.92), Mike Minor (5-2, 4.27), Randall Delgado (1-1, 2.70) or Julio Teheran (1-1, 5.40). The debate is whether you go with the veteran with postseason experience in the hope that he comes through, or one of the young pitchers in the hope that he doesn’t implode.

I’m going to play Switzerland on this subject. At least for another week.

But you may now vote, and fire away . . .

By Jeff Schultz

Follow me on Twitter @JeffSchultzAJC; friend me at Facebook.com/JeffSchultzAJC

519 comments Add your comment

BG

September 21st, 2011
10:16 pm

First. Hell no

Dr. Phil

September 21st, 2011
10:17 pm

I don’t think the Braves should go to the post season. It is too embarrassing.

Scott

September 21st, 2011
10:18 pm

He has 16 losses on a team that’s 20 games over 500. That there should be enough of an answer. Cards up 6-4 last I saw on a 2 out homer where no one on base, 2 singles and then the homer. They are red hot, pun intended. The Braves are done. Nice epic collapse.

Rob

September 21st, 2011
10:20 pm

Time for Fredi to go

Crockett

September 21st, 2011
10:20 pm

Worrying about who to start in Game 3 of the NLDS should be the least of the Braves worries right now.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:22 pm

I wish I was a Cardinal fan…that team is something to be excited about. They know how to execute a win.

Go_Bravos

September 21st, 2011
10:22 pm

As long as the offense keeps refusing to hit, it doesn’t matter what pitcher is starting. Unless they throw a shutout we have no chance of winning.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:23 pm

Braves will be behnd by Sunday. Phillies will sweep them again! Mark it down…nice job of managing.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:24 pm

Perhaps they should allow Lowe to have on more beer before taking the mound..he is not drunk enough.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:25 pm

Gotta be tough to be the Braves Beat Reporter!

Damon Barryhill

September 21st, 2011
10:25 pm

with everything on the line, this sorry team gets 2 hit by yet another chump team. Absolute joke. This team doesn’t deserve to go to the playoffs anyway – no heart, no hitting. Trade Jurriens please – he’s a brittle player who can’t finish a season, ever.

Pitiful, PITIFUL performance from another team of pretenders.

NagoyaBrave

September 21st, 2011
10:26 pm

Fred tinkered too much with the lineup. It’s his coaching and Dlowe’s poor pitching that have brought us to the brink. So I say two negatives make a positive: Braves fall into the playoffs with Dlowe as third starter. Come on Braves!

Herschel Talker

September 21st, 2011
10:26 pm

Schultzie:

This is ridiculous. Everyone knows they’re not making it at this point. You really think we’re going to win one fewer game than the Cards hereon out considering the Cards play the Cubs and the Astros (and one game against the pitiful Mets)?

Why even write this drivel? Please write on this collapse and the ramifications on the Fredi regime.

HT

rich

September 21st, 2011
10:26 pm

The poll should be who will pass the Braves in the wild card standings…Cardinals, Giants or both…the smart money is on both

Angie O'Plasty

September 21st, 2011
10:27 pm

These guys are chokes !

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:28 pm

By Friday morning..the Braves will be just one game up…by Saturday they will be tied..by Sunday they will be one game out. Awesome team…we are so proud of you.

WTF

September 21st, 2011
10:28 pm

So the last post was too honest? Boy, you AJC guys have a real hook there – maybe you should pitch for the Braves next year – they need help.
Trip, stumble and fall…
On the beach in a week.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:29 pm

Why in the world would anyone think this team is going to the playoffs…they are all mental right now. Can’t pitch, field and never could hit.

archie

September 21st, 2011
10:29 pm

The Atlanta Police Dept. should’ve locked him up when they had the chance. The Braves would have clinched the wild card by now.

Mack

September 21st, 2011
10:31 pm

Mack

September 21st, 2011
10:34 pm

Ironic how two ex braves, omar and javier, both beat and will be the reason the braves don’t make the playoffs. That first game was the killer.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:35 pm

so far, the cards have 9 hits tonight…how many did we get?

Larry

September 21st, 2011
10:36 pm

Enter your comments hereJeff,

Come on man, it’s down to one game in the lost column…

Go be the Jeff Schultz whose courage–unlike DOB–we’ve all come to respect
and ask a more legitimate question like “why should Fredi Jeff,

Come on man, it’s down to one game in the lost column…

Go be the Jeff Schultz whose courage–unlike DOB–we’ve all come to respect
and ask a more legitimate question like “why should Fredi Gonzalez be
retained after blowing what was considered an insurmountable lead in just
two weeks?”

Seriously, Jeff, how about asking the tough questions to and about Fredi
that you’ve asked about Mark Richt, an infinitely more accomplished and
successful coach.

Gonzalez be retained after blowing what was considered an insurmountable lead in just two weeks

Seriously, Jeff, how about asking the tough questions to and about Fredi
that you’ve asked about Mark Richt, an infinitely more accomplished and
successful coach.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:36 pm

Don’t worry…Chipper says the Brave can take the Phillies in the playoffs. I guess he meant, take them their bats and balls for BP! Amazing.

DAboze

September 21st, 2011
10:37 pm

Srndn Lower down to the minors and bring up someone who has a chance to win.

J Clay

September 21st, 2011
10:37 pm

I don’t think we will have to answer the question as they’re not getting in postseason

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:37 pm

perhaps we should fire Gonzalez and then rehire him.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:38 pm

Chipper is confident we can take the Phillies in the playoffs. no worries everyone.

J Clay

September 21st, 2011
10:39 pm

Good call loweser, bravos stunk since the mouth ole Chip said Philly series did not matter and they would beat them in playoffs….but the ATL media loves Chip and would never dare call him out

jharris

September 21st, 2011
10:40 pm

I looked at the Cardinals’ remaining games versus the Braves’ remaining games. The Cardinals face the Cubs and the Astros which should be a cake walk on paper. The Braves face the Nationals and the Phillies which is very difficult.

Fredi is a fraud.

September 21st, 2011
10:41 pm

If DLOWE is going to pitch in the postseason, I’d rather see a team like the Cardinals there instead. How much more can Fredi make the Braves an embarrassment and to have DLOWE pitch on this team?

me give up

September 21st, 2011
10:43 pm

Better question is: Do the Braves want a traditional funeral or be cremated?

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:44 pm

nah nah nah nah nah nah nah nah hey hey hey goodbye….Cards win!

Mr C

September 21st, 2011
10:45 pm

Stick a fork on the Braves. It’s down to 1 game. Jeff that’s a silly question. The question is should Lowe pitch this weekend? Will the Braves make the playoffs???

Reid Adair

September 21st, 2011
10:46 pm

Jeff, I am a bit surprised that “Anybody BUT Derek Lowe” isn’t a choice. Oh well.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:47 pm

Lowe is a thief…just stealing the millions from the Braves organization.

Big Wally

September 21st, 2011
10:49 pm

Problem is, they are a very undisciplined team at the plate. Ugla, McCann, Heyward, just swing for the fences all the time regardless of the count, or the situation in the game. The whole team is horrible at advancing runners, and they strand runners at third all the time. I thought Freddie would manage differently than Bobby, but it turns out he will be Cox 2.0. At least they are choking in September instead of October this time.

Darryl Blackberry

September 21st, 2011
10:50 pm

I swear, it’s like the same blogger posts the same negative trash in here under, like, 50 different names. Save all that “I hate Fredi” and “Stick a fork in this team” sentiment for Mr. Lowe. Not only should Derek not get to start in the postseason, but he should also not get another start during the regular season. The wild card race is simply too tight to risk even a “not poor” performance from a starter; anything less than competitive just won’t cut it.

I’ll be so much happier with the team once Lowe and Kawakami are off the books and far away from the pitching mound.

Jabo

September 21st, 2011
10:52 pm

The Braves can look at the Cardinals and watch a team with heart. All of the Braves can hit but it seems most are waiting for someone to hit a big home run. This didn’t just happen, it’s been going on all season long. The pitching has been sufficent all year, but the hitting has been pathetic. When a prfessional can’t even hit a sacrifice fly then that says it all. It’s all over I hope because this team has no heart and is vastly overpaid. Maybe next year, this one is over.

Big Wally

September 21st, 2011
10:52 pm

I not only think they won’t make the playoffs, I don’t even think it will be that close. I think the Cardinals win it by 3 or 4 games. Braves will be known as the great choke team of 2011. Our only hope is that Boston chokes too, so that we won’t be laughed at as much.

Ray

September 21st, 2011
10:52 pm

well the nats just sweeped the phillies. does anyone think we can? Haha

Willie Jacques

September 21st, 2011
10:53 pm

Lowe should not have been on the mount tonight. It should have been a rookie. How worst can it get. The acquisition of Derek Lowe was a stupid one.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:54 pm

Cards win the World Series…mark it down.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:55 pm

Braves extend Lowe’s contract into 2018 and Brooks Conrad becomes an everyday starter.

NorCal Brave

September 21st, 2011
10:55 pm

I voted for Delgado, based on his composure and consistency. Derek as been disappointing. but you can’t hang this month-long meltdown only on him. This has been a collapse of the entire team: hitters, pitchers, and an uninspiring manager and coaching staff. For my money I would can Fredi, find a manager who can handle the club, and do a thorough review of all coaching positions, starting with Larry Parrish. My concern is that Fredi will get a pass because JJ and Hanson went down.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:57 pm

This meltdown, besides Lowe, has not been the starting pitching. It is the lack of run production. No one on this team knows how to bunt or advance a runner or make contact. It is swinging away…and most of these clowns are not hr hitters.

Keith

September 21st, 2011
10:57 pm

I said it before and I’ll say it again Lowe needs to go he has single handedly put the Braves on the brink of elimination form the playoff WTH is Gonzo thinking?

Big Wally

September 21st, 2011
10:59 pm

Team has no heart. No one to kick butt and call some players out. As soon as Jurrjens and Hanson went out, they basically quit.

loweser

September 21st, 2011
10:59 pm

If Lowe was just an average (5th starter) he would be like 10-10….those 6 games would come in handy right now. And this goof was saying to wait till September…he was going to be the difference maker. Guess he was right!

ct

September 21st, 2011
11:00 pm

problem with playing the phillies next week is charlie manuel said he is going to play all the regulars starting saturday in new york for the last 5 games. braves are cooked