It doesn’t look like Dell (DELL, $25.21, down $0.42) is going to have a good Friday. After the bell, the company reported a 17% drop in earnings after lowering prices and taking some restructuring charges for the quarter.

Dell earned $616 million, or $0.31 a share, versus $746 million, or $0.32 a share, in the year ago quarter. Wall Street had forecast a profit of $0.36. Although sales grew over 10% to $16.4 billion (Wall Street expected $15.9 billion) the lower prices for their computers cut into earnings.

The company has done a great job of growing its business in retail stores and the price cuts helped Dell gain a bigger piece of the market share pie. Its laptop shipments grew 44% year-over-year the company reported.

However, Wall Street is taking the stock out to the woodshed in after-hours trading as shares are down nearly $2. The stock could recover a little bit but there’s a good possibility Dell will open Friday’s session lower than today’s closing price. There was whispers that the company would report a blowout quarter but today’s news is another example on why you shouldn’t play earnings with options.

Rick Rouse