When the Los Angeles Dodgers signed Brett Anderson in the offseason it was met with some frustration and confusion. Along with Brandon McCarthy, Anderson’s signing signaled the Dodgers weren’t likely to add James Shields or Max Scherzer to the rotation as many hoped and expected.
In taking a gamble on the oft-injured Anderson, the Dodgers figured to have a fifth starter with a high ceiling. At worst, they’d search for a replacement in the event the left-hander struggled or fell victim to another injury. However, now over two months into the season, Anderson has been key to helping keep the Dodgers on track.
After the Dodgers’ 7-1 win over the Miami Marlins, Anderson was pleased with his night of work and said his goal is to follow in the footsteps of aces Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw, via Manny Navarro on ESPN:
It was good to complete seven,” he said. “You want to go deep into ballgames and be another Clayton Kershaw or Zack Greinke. Hopefully I can continue to give us a chance to win.”
Anderson cited the effectiveness of his assortment of pitches as reason for the strong outing and shared the self confidence he has:
My stuff was probably the best overall it’s been — sinker, some strikeouts with my slider, which hasn’t been there. I was able to do that, especially to Stanton and some other guys. Like I kept telling people, I think I’m a good pitcher. I know I’m a good pitcher and I can get people out when I’m able to go out there and stay healthy. It’s kind of proven true to this point.”
Season-ending injuries to McCarthy and Hyun-Jin Ryu elevated Anderson to the club’s No. 3 starter and while Mike Bolsinger and Carlos Frias have struggled in recent weeks, Anderson has continued to plug along. Friday was arguably Anderson’s best start of the season as he allowed just one run in seven innings and tied a career high with 10 strikeouts.
Anderson is 2-1 in five June starts with the Dodgers 3-2 during that same stretch. Their two losses were both by one run, and certainly at no fault of Anderson’s. The 27-year-old left-hander is now 4-4 on the season with a 3.13 ERA, 1.29 WHIP and 3.36 xFIP.