An era of sorts ended for the Atlanta Braves when 20-season mainstay John Smoltz accepted a free agent deal with Boston. Coincidentally, they are on the verge of replacing him with a pitcher whose greatest moments came with the Red Sox.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution is reporting this afternoon that righthander Derek Lowe has agreed to terms on a four-year contract worth about $60 million. The deal will be finalized pending a physical tomorrow, according to the newspaper's website.
Lowe, 35, has a career 126-107 record in 12 seasons with Seattle, the Red Sox, and the Los Angeles Dodgers. Lowe, who joined the Dodgers as a free agent following the 2004 season, was 14-11 with a 3.24 ERA last season.
He was also reportedly coveted by the New York Mets, but he recently turned down their three-year, $36 million offer.
Lowe, a sinkerballer who helped pitch the Red Sox to the 2004 championship by winning the clinching game in American League Division Series, AL Championship Series, and World Series, is one of the game's most durable pitchers, averaging 208 innings and 15 wins the past seven seasons.
He will join Jair Jurrjens, Javier Vazquez (acquired from the White Sox this offseason), and Japanese pitcher Kenshin Kawakami in a remodeled Atlanta rotation.
Not only has Smoltz departed, but righthander Tim Hudson is recovering from ligament replacement surgery in his elbow and veteran lefthander Tom Glavine is a free agent.