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is-the-derek-lowe-trade-a-halloween-trick-or-treat | October | 2011 Articles

Is the Derek Lowe Trade a Halloween Trick or Treat?

Written by Joe Lucia on .

I'm sure you've all heard the news by now. The Braves made a big splash before free agency has started, sending Derek Lowe to the Indians for minor league pitcher Chris Jones. This is essentially a nothing return, as Jones is a 23 year old in A-ball who looks like his ceiling is a LOOGY.

More importantly, the move clears a roster spot and some salary for the Braves. They're picking up $10 million of the $15 million Lowe is owed, so the savings of $5 million will allow them to play around a little bit. But what are the Braves really losing with Lowe? His ERA has been 4.00 or over in all three seasons with the Braves, but that doesn't tell the whole story, as his FIP over the last three years has gone from 4.06 to 3.89 to 3.70. A high BABIP in each of his three years in Atlanta screwed him, due in part to the terrible infield defense behind him (excluding what he's gotten at shortstop).

Over the last three seasons in Atlanta, Lowe has thrown 575 1/3 innings, the highest on the team by nearly 100. He's been healthy as well, making 101 starts. The other three main Braves starters are in the 70s. Lowe's 4.57 ERA is the highest of the four, but his FIP is third (3.89 compared to 3.90 for Jair Jurrjens), and his xFIP is also third, just behind Tommy Hanson (Hansonis at 3.73, Lowe is at 3.78). Looking at each starter's peripherals, it's quite bizarre. Hanson stands apart from the trio in strikeout rate, but Lowe, Tim Hudson and Jurrjens range from 6.01 to 6.11. The four are similar in walk rate as well, ranging from 2.65 to 3.03. Homer rate is another similar area, with the quartet ranging from 0.70 to 0.80.

But the major differences point to luck. Lowe has a 69.5% strand rate while no one else is under 75%. Lowe's BABIP is .321, and the next highest on the staff is .278. That points mainly to crappy luck, but there's another factor involved too: Lowe's average fastball velocity has dropped to 88.4 mph, with all of the others at least two mph higher.

I don't think Lowe was necessarily bad with the Braves, I think he was just victimized by a crappy situation. I'd be willing to bet he'll be more successful with the Indians than he was in Atlanta. But let's be honest, the team had a need to trade a starting pitcher with the glut of young pitching in the system. Lowe was the most reasonable option to move. Another one of the veterans may need to be moved as well to make room for Julio Teheran in the rotation, unless the team is willing to let him rot for another year in AAA....and I don't think that's the best idea. 
1 comments
congtysangoviet1
congtysangoviet1

More importantly, the move clears a roster spot and some salary for the Braves. They're picking up $10 million of the $15 million Lowe is owed, so the savings of $5 million will allow them to play around a little bit http://bit.ly/trieu-chung-dau-hieu-cua-benh-tri. But what are the Braves really losing with Lowe? His ERA has been 4.00 or over in all three seasons with the Braves, but that doesn't tell the whole story, as his FIP over the last three years has gone from 4.06 to 3.89 to 3.70. A high BABIP in each of his three years in Atlanta screwed him, due in part to the terrible infield defense behind him (excluding what he's gotten at shortstop).


Over the last three seasons in Atlanta, Lowe has thrown 575 1/3 innings, the highest on the team by nearly 100. He's been healthy as well, making 101 starts. The other three main Braves starters are in the 70s. Lowe's 4.57 ERA is the highest of the four, but his FIP is third (3.89 compared to 3.90 for Jair Jurrjens), and his xFIP is also third, just behind Tommy Hanson (Hansonis at 3.73, Lowe sàn gỗ gõ đỏ is at 3.78). Looking at each starter's peripherals, it's quite bizarre. Hanson stands apart from the trio in strikeout rate, but Lowe, Tim Hudson and Jurrjens range from 6.01 to 6.11. The four are similar in walk rate as well, ranging from 2.65 to 3.03. Homer rate is another similar area, with the quartet ranging from 0.70 to 0.80.

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