Prospect Díaz, veteran Anderson carry Miami

August 26th, 2020

As they’ve done all season, the Marlins continue to receive contributions from some interchangeable parts. Their patchwork roster has been a blend of established veterans, like Jonathan Villar and Corey Dickerson, along with prospects such as Lewin Díaz and Jesús Sánchez.

Díaz came through with a big RBI single on Tuesday and Sánchez made a nice catch in right field on Brandon Nimmo’s sinking line drive in the third inning. Perhaps the most encouraging sign in the Marlins’ 4-0 victory in Game 1 of the doubleheader against the Mets at Citi Field was Brian Anderson’s two doubles.

Anderson remains a rock in the foundation the Marlins are building. The 27-year-old third baseman is arbitration-eligible after the season, and he is starting to reach his prime. But he’s also been in a slump for much of August.

The doubles were his first and second of the season, which is baffling considering he’s a gap hitter who had 33 two-base hits last year and 34 in 2018.

“It's nice, you're always searching for the first one,” Anderson said. “Obviously, it was taking a little longer than I was expecting it to. Just being able to go out there and put good at-bats together, and square the ball up and try to get on top of the other team a little earlier than we have been.”

The Marlins (13-11) snapped a five-game losing streak to the Mets.

In the first game Tuesday, Anderson went 2-for-3 and scored a pair of runs in his second straight multi-hit game. He went 2-for-6 in Sunday’s 11-8 win at Washington. He’s hitting .244 with a .779 OPS.

Game 1 was delayed 65 minutes due to rain in the middle of the third inning.

Ultimately a middle-of-the-order run producer, Anderson was a table setter. He laced a double in the second inning off Rick Porcello, a blistering drive to left that had an exit velocity of 103.8 mph, according to Statcast. It started a three-run inning.

With two on and two out, Lewis Brinson laced an RBI single that had an exit speed of 109.8 mph. Miguel Rojas followed with a two-run single, capping the three-run rally.

And in the third inning, Anderson added his second double, which traveled a projected 400 feet and had an exit velocity of 102.6 mph. He scored on Díaz’s two-out single, making it 4-0.

In Anderson’s third at-bat, he hit the ball well to center field, though it went for a loud out that had an exit speed of 99.3 mph.

Left-hander Daniel Castano threw 4 2/3 scoreless innings, but he didn’t qualify for his first big league win because he didn’t make it through five innings. Castano made his second start in three days, but that was by design. On Saturday at Washington, he was the opener and recorded just one out, while throwing 23 pitches.

Following the first game, Castano was optioned to the club's alternate training site. Lefty Trevor Rogers, Miami’s No. 9 prospect per MLB Pipeline, had his contract selected before starting Game 2.

“I’m just learning from week to week, and slowing the game down, throwing strikes and letting the defense work,” Castano said. “They did that again.”