Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Good Luck D-Lowe!

As a Dodger fan, I knew this day was coming... it wasn't a matter of if, it was when and where. Most of us knew that when he pitched on October 13, 2008 against the eventual World Champion Philadelphia Philles that the guy known as "D-Lowe" had likely made his last pitch as a member of the Blue Crew. As happened so often in his career as a Dodger, Lowe left that game leading only to see the bullpen give it up. In this game (divisional playoff game 4) he left after five innings leading 3-2. The Dodgers would eventually lose that game 7-5.

In four years as a Dodger he was only 54-48 in the won-loss column. To look at his record alone would be very misleading. Twice in those four years, D-Lowe received the worst run support of any NL pitcher. With a better offense behind him, you're talking about a guy who would have won 16-20 games every year rather than only once. Over his four years as a Dodger he posted ERA's of 3.61, 3.63, 3.88 and 3.24. Yes, D-Lowe was a model of consistency - the one steady and reliable force the Dodgers had on their staff. Not as flashy as Chad Billingsley, not as hyped by the media as much as the perhaps more talented Brad Penny, D-Lowe just did his job. He took the mound every fifth day and gave the Dodgers a chance to win just about every time.

After his requisite thrashing at Busch Stadium on August 6th - he just never has pitched well there for some reason (fantasy leaguers take that as a note for the 2009 season), he was almost perfect... In his final 10 regular season starts as a Dodger, Lowe gave up EIGHT runs... yes, EIGHT earned runs allowed ih his final 64 regular season innings - a stellar 1.13 ERA to go with a 6-1 record over that time. The Manny may have gotten all of the credit for the Dodgers championship run last year, but reality is that Derek Lowe played a pretty big role himself.

Today, Derek Lowe signed with the Atlanta Braves - 4 years, $60 million dollars... Yes, that is a whole lot of cash and I must say it's well-deserved. Braves fans, you can rest assured you're getting a good one, ok almost a GREAT one if you want the truth... a money pitcher (he gave up all of two earned runs in each of his three playoff games this year). Our loss is your gain. Good luck, Derek... you'll be missed here, though rest assured, there will ALWAYS be a spot on my fantasy teams for you! Without you, I would have been a pretender and not a contender in a lot of leagues these past few years!


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