What's old is new again in the Bronx. That's the way the New York Yankees are looking at their player acquisitions these days. On July 23, the Yankees traded for Ichiro Suzuki, and the move has already paid off; Ichiro is hitting .315 as a Yankee.
Eight days ago, Derek Lowe came on board to help the Yankees' bullpen. He was released by the Cleveland Indians on August 2. The Yankees signed him to a free-agent deal for the rest of the 2012 season.
Lowe is 39 years old and possibly in his last major league season. Lowe's 2012 season has been a tale of two halves. More specifically, Lowe enjoyed a sharp first two months and then suffered a dismal subsequent two months. Following a victory on June 1 against Minnesota, Lowe was 7-3 in 11 starts with a 3.06 ERA.
Then, everything went downhill. By the end of July, Lowe's ERA had ballooned to 5.52 and he was routinely getting smacked around the park in each start. In fact, he had a pitiful 8.80 ERA over his final 12 starts for the Indians. Lowe was shown the door.
Lowe dazzled in his Yankees debut, closing out a Monday-night victory over the Rangers on August 13 by firing four shutout innings and striking out four on 44 pitches. That's the Derek Lowe the Yankees hope they're getting for the stretch run.
Four innings in one appearance do not make for any solid conclusions, but it's reasonable to believe there's cause for optimism. The change of scenery has helped Ichiro. It may help Lowe, as well. Here are five reasons why Derek Lowe's addition to the 2012 Yankees could pay huge dividends for New York.