Phillies 2021 Season Player Preview: Chase Anderson

Chase Anderson #57 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images)
Chase Anderson #57 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images) /

When the Philadelphia Phillies signed right-hander Chase Anderson to a one-year, $4 million contract in February, it was with the intention of him battling for a back-end spot in the starting rotation.

His ERA of 7.22 in 10 games last season may scare people, however, that appears to be a “blip on the radar” — considering his career ERA just under four in his other 166 games.

Predicting how Chase Anderson will fare in his first season with the Phillies

For those that are unfamiliar with Anderson, he was selected by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the ninth round of the 2009 draft. After a considerable time in the minors, Anderson was a 26-year-old rookie with Arizona in 2014. He finished with a 9-7 record and a 4.11 ERA in 21 starts.

After two relatively mediocre seasons — in which he posted a 15-17 record with an ERA north of 4.30 — Anderson put together his best Major League season. He won 12 for the Brewers in 2017 against only four losses, with an ERA of 2.74 and 133 strikeouts — along with only 113 hits allowed in 141 1/3 innings.

Anderson had two solid seasons in 2018 and 2019, but didn’t regain the form he had in 2017. One issue was his tendency to give up the long ball, allowing a league-leading 30 in 158 innings in 2018. Getting a chance to help change the Phillies fortunes from a year ago, what can we expect from Anderson in 2021?

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One thing Anderson must improve, to have success at Citizens Bank Park, is the long ball. He surrendered an astonishing 11 home runs in only 33 2/3 innings last season. He will likely benefit from better run support than the 3.75 runs per game he got in 2020. Anderson has allowed 1.4 home runs per nine innings, and he should get that number down to around one per nine innings to be most effective.

Anderson can be a strikeout pitcher, as his 10.2 strikeouts per nine innings last season indicates. He’s never thrown more than 158 innings, won more than 12 games, nor struck out more than 133 in a season. He won’t this year, either, but as a No. 5 starter, that isn’t expected. Look for a near .500 winning percentage with seven wins, 140 innings, and a respectable ERA more in line with his career average.

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