After splitting time at both third base and in right field in his rookie season, what does the 2019 MLB year have in store for Brian Anderson?
The third baseman/right fielder split time around the base pads and in the outfield, giving way to veteran Martin Prado, who once again returned from a stint on the disabled list. Brian Anderson’s future with the organization is at the hot corner, but until Prado’s career in Miami is over, that time may a little more than expected.
For now, Anderson’s versatility is a valuable commodity for skipper Don Mattingly, who knows he has a solid bat in either the second or third spot in the batting order.
After finishing fourth in the 2018 National League Rookie of the Year Award voting, Brian Anderson is a big part of the club’s core. There’s no question Anderson will be a middle-of-the-order candidate. It’s less clear where will he play.
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"“A natural third baseman, [Brian] Anderson appeared in 91 games in right field a year ago, compared to 71 at the hot corner. His versatility is a luxury,” Joe Frisaro of MLB.com wrote."
With the signing of Neil Walker this week to share time at first base and the battle to win the shortstop position between JT Riddle and Miguel Rojas, there is plenty of competition coming into Spring Training. Prado is beloved by the organization and a positive influence in the clubhouse. That alone is worth everything to the Marlins.
After watching Anderson play third base in 2016 and 2017 in Jacksonville at the Marlins Double-A affiliate, I can tell you he is still a work in progress, but his bat could mean he grows into a 20-25 home run hitter in time.
The former third-round pick out of Arkansas in 2014 still has some developing to do, but he is on the right track.
"“Anderson, 25, may wind up in right field if another option isn’t available. The health of Martin Prado may also be a factor,” Frisaro adds.“Prado has dealt with hamstring, knee and oblique injuries the past two seasons. If healthy, Prado could be at third base, with Anderson in right. Otherwise, Anderson could be back in the infield at the hot corner.”"
Brian Anderson batted .273 for the season with 11 home runs and 65 RBI. He finished second on the team with 161 hits and second in RBI. It’s just a start to what could be a long, dependable career with the Marlins.