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Anderson finds groove after two excellent starts

Mets' latest team to fall to righty's dominance
MLB.com

NEW YORK -- It is not uncommon for a starting pitcher to come out flat following a no-hit bid that lasted into the game's later innings, but Chase Anderson does not care much for that theory.

Anderson rediscovered his early season form Sunday against the D-backs and carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning. He finished with seven-plus shutout innings on just one hit and a career-high 11 strikeouts.

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NEW YORK -- It is not uncommon for a starting pitcher to come out flat following a no-hit bid that lasted into the game's later innings, but Chase Anderson does not care much for that theory.

Anderson rediscovered his early season form Sunday against the D-backs and carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning. He finished with seven-plus shutout innings on just one hit and a career-high 11 strikeouts.

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His no-hit bid Thursday didn't make it past the second inning during the Brewers' 2-1 victory over the Mets, but his results were nearly identical. Again, Anderson tossed seven scoreless, this time allowing just three hits (two singles from Lucas Duda) and struck out seven. The right-hander is now 4-1 with a 3.30 ERA this season.

"It was just kind of a continuation of consistently trying to stay in that groove," Anderson said. "When you're in it, you want to stay in it as long as you possibly can."

Prior to his start Sunday, Anderson had been 0-1 with a 7.30 ERA over his previous five starts. The pair of starts this week, though, may indicate a prolonged reversal of his struggles.

"You have to really dig deep when you're not pitching great. You kind of get tentative at times, you want to nitpick," Anderson said. "But you have to really go out there and just attack the strike zone, know what you do well. That's why you're successful. Last few times I've been able to do that, help this team out and win games."

Video: MIL@NYM: Anderson strikes out Bruce in the 1st

Anderson grew stronger as the game wore on, much like he did against Arizona. The top four hitters in the Mets order -- Michael Conforto, Jose Reyes, Jay Bruce and Neil Walker -- went 0-12 against him, and he retired the final 15 of 16 batters he faced, including the final 10.

"The third time he went through the lineup he was still in a great rhythm," manager Craig Counsell said. "He was outstanding today, for sure."

Counsell attributed Anderson's recent dominance to the development of his curveball and cutter to complement his fastball and changeup, which serve as his primary pitches. Anderson worked hard to find the confidence and skill to throw those pitches competitively.

The 29-year-old hammered the strike zone with all four pitches successfully this week. On Sunday, he threw 72 strikes on 114 pitches, while he fired 104 pitches Thursday, 68 of them for strikes. Anderson also did not throw more than 99 pitches in his first nine starts, but has now surpassed the 100-pitch benchmark in his two most recent outings.

Anderson said his curveball came along last year, and he learned to throw it as a strike late last season, then honed his cutter during Spring Training. However, he won't go as far as Counsell to say he is officially a four-pitch hurler. Rather, that's a goal he is working toward.

"He's in a good place right now," Counsell said.

Chris Bumbaca is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the Brewers on Thursday.

Milwaukee Brewers, Chase Anderson