Derek Lowe
Derek Lowe
45-Year-Old PitcherRP
 Free Agent  
Free Agent
2019 Fantasy Outlook
There was no outlook written for Derek Lowe in 2019. Check out the latest news below for more on his current fantasy value.
$Signed a minor league deal with the Rangers in March 2013.
PFree Agent  
July 18, 2013
Lowe announced his retirement Thursday, NESN.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Lowe was cut by the Rangers on May 23 after pitching unremarkably over nine appearances out of the bullpen. He's now elected to call it a career, with no other suitors interested in his services. The 40-year-old played 17 seasons in the majors, posting a 176-157 record and 4.03 ERA.
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After a couple of dismal seasons in the rotation, Lowe was marginally useful out of the bullpen for the Yankees, giving up just two earned runs in his last 14.1 innings in middle relief and mop-up work. He may catch on in a bullpen somewhere, but Lowe is far too hittable at this point to find any greater role than that.
Lowe snapped a streak of winning 12 or more games in nine consecutive seasons last year and posted an ugly 5.05 ERA. After the season he was traded in a salary dump to Cleveland with the Braves paying $10 million of the $15 million left on the final year of his contract. However, his peripheral numbers show he really wasn't that much different of a pitcher than his two previous seasons in Atlanta. His FIP, which tries to show a pitcher's ERA for the elements he can control, of 3.70 last season was nearly identical to the 3.89 FIP he posted in 2010 and his 4.05 FIP in 2009. While he gave up a few more walks, he also saw his BAPIP increase to .327 from .305. He may have been unlucky and could be a bounce-back candidate as a result, although that may be somewhat muted by moving to the AL from the NL. He'll add veteran depth to the Indians rotation, and at age 39 in June, he's still durable and generates enough ground balls (59 percent of batted balls) to think he has another decent year left in his career.
Lowe's first season in Atlanta in 2009 after signing a four-year, $60 million contract looked like a bust after he posted a 4.67 ERA, but his second season was a somewhat surprising return to form. Lowe won 16 games and has won 12 or more games in nine consecutive seasons. He increased his strikeout rate, slightly reduced his walk rate and slightly improved his usual strong groundball rate (58.8 percent groundballs allowed). However, the better explanation may be a decline from the second highest BABIP in his career in 2009. Either way, Lowe is still durable at age 37 and should produce similar results as Atlanta's No. 3 or No. 4 starter.
Lowe failed to live up to the four-year, $60-million deal he signed following the 2008 season. His ERA, WHIP and BAA were all at higher levels than they were at the end of any of his four seasons in Los Angeles. Lowe saw a decline in his strikeout rate and allowed the lowest rate of groundballs (under 60 percent of batted balls) since he returned to the starting rotation in 2002. Since he'll turn 37 this season, the risk seems to the downside, although it's worth noting that his .330 BABIP was the highest it has been since 2004 when he was in Boston. Lowe will be the No. 4 or No. 5 starter for the Braves and remains durable and capable of another season of 12 or more wins.
Lowe finished a four-year, $36 million contract with the Dodgers with his fourth consecutive sub-4.00 ERA / double-digit wins season. He's among the league's most consistent starters and though his strikeout numbers will never move much above 150, Lowe keeps his ERA and WHIP low with perhaps the league's top sinker. He seems to be getting better with age and at 35. He'll be the No. 1 or No. 2 starter with the Braves after signing a four-year contract.
Lowe has been a model of consistency for the Dodgers in his three years with the club, notching his sixth consecutive year of 32-plus starts. As a Dodger, Lowe has never won fewer than 12 games or posted an ERA above last year's 3.88. He seems to have a rubber arm and though he'll never front a rotation -- fantasy or otherwise -- you can pencil him in for 12-14 wins, 140 strikeouts, and an ERA near 3.80.
Having made at least 33 starts in each of his five years as a starter, Lowe has proved to be a valuable innings eater. He's not a strikeout pitcher, but Lowe plus Dodger Stadium should be good for somewhere in the 15-win range and a solid ERA and WHIP. He's not a No. 1 starter, but he's durable and owners won't have to worry about the waiver wire with him.
Lowe's 3.61 ERA looks a little better than it really is - he gave up 24 unearned runs in 2005, with a whopping 19 of them coming on the road. He's an effective innings-eater, but in no way should he be counted to anchor your fantasy staff.
Lowe boosted his salary significantly in the postseason with gutsy performances in the ALCS. While those big game heroics made good theatre, his regular season made good vaudeville. He comes with the reputation of folding when things go bad (.303 with runners on in 2004). After his stellar 2002 season, Lowe has been trending downward. He's walking more batters, allowing more hits and runs, and striking out less batters. The move to Dodger Stadium should help Lowe's numbers, but one concern for the ground-ball pitcher is that the Los Angeles infield defense took a step back after offseason transactions. He will be a very serviceable No. 2-3 starter, but he's not the "big-game" guy that his playoff performances suggest. One minor worry about Lowe is a recurring blister he seems to experience every summer.
Lowe will be the third man in the rotation behind Pedro Martinez and Curt Schilling. He had some alarming home/road splits last year, but that trend lessened as the season wore on. No fantasy owner will be disappointed with Lowe.
Lowe, 29, gave the Red Sox a solid second banana to Pedro Martinez, finishing third in the Cy Young voting. He ranked in the top 10 in many pitching categories, finishing with a 21-8 record and 2.58 ERA in 32 starts. He was afforded good run support (6.84, second in the league), but didn't need it because he allowed a mere .211 BAA (166 hits) in 219 2/3 innings. If the Sox opt to start the knuckle-balling Tim Wakefield between Pedro and Lowe, Lowe could be even more dangerous.
More Fantasy News
PFree Agent  
May 23, 2013
Lowe was released by the Rangers on Thursday, MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan reports.
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PTexas Rangers  
May 22, 2013
Lowe cleared waivers Wednesday and now has the option to report to Triple-A Round Rock or test the free-agent market, CBSSports.com reports.
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PTexas Rangers  
May 20, 2013
Lowe was designated for assignment Monday, the Rangers' Executive Vice President of Communications John Blake reports.
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PTexas Rangers  
April 20, 2013
Lowe earned his first win of the season, pitching four hitless innings in relief of injured starter Nick Tepesch (wrist) against the Mariners on Saturday.
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PTexas Rangers  
March 31, 2013
Lowe's contract was purchased by the Rangers on Sunday, the team's official site reports.
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