After rebuffing a reported 3 year, $36 million offer from the New York Mets, SP Derek Lowe has come to terms with the Atlanta Braves on a 4-year, $60 million pact writes the Journal-Constitution’s Dave O’Brien.

Lowe would join a potentially strong new-look Braves rotation that will include Jair Jurrjens and offseason additions Javier Vazquez and Kenshin Kawakami (above), a Japanesse star who™ll be introduced to Atlanta at a news conference this afternoon to announce his free-agent signing.

Before landing Kawakami and Lowe in the past four days, the Braves had fallen short in several other offseason pursuits of pitchers – notably Peavy, A.J. Burnett and Mike Hampton – as well as their attempt to sign shortstop Rafael Furcal.

Then there was the blow of franchise icon John Smoltz™s decision to go to Boston. Getting Lowe seemed ever more crucial for the Braves, who™ve added two durable starters in him and Vazquez, plus a former 215-inning starter in Kawakami. All are right-handers.

From the don’t-hold-your-breath dept., WFAN’s Ed Coleman claimed earlier today that Billy Wagner’s recovery is proceeding ahead of schedule and the reliever could be available by August.  Much as ‘pen depth featuring K-Rod, Putz and Wagner seems like an embarrassment of riches, you have to figure there’s some minor league rehab time tossed in for Wags.  Unless the club is very confident about Country Time’s fitness and/or there’s something to play for in September, there’s no reason to activate him unless it’s intended as a showcase.