MIAMI -- About six weeks before his first big league callup, Brian Anderson experienced playing at Marlins Park. The 24-year-old third baseman participated in the Sirius XM Futures Game on July 9, and had two hits for the United States squad.Anderson now is getting a chance to stick around South
MIAMI -- About six weeks before his first big league callup, Brian Anderson experienced playing at Marlins Park. The 24-year-old third baseman participated in the Sirius XM Futures Game on July 9, and had two hits for the United States squad.
Anderson now is getting a chance to stick around South Florida for more than just a weekend, and the way he looked in his MLB debut on Friday, he appears to have a bright future. Anderson went 1-for-3 and made a couple of nice plays at third in the Marlins' 2-1 loss to the Phillies at Marlins Park.
"It's what I've played my whole life to get, this opportunity, and it was awesome and I had a lot of fun," he said.
Anderson was one of three callups for the Marlins on Friday, the first day rosters were eligible to expand. Left-hander Dillon Peters and right-hander Javy Guerra were also called up. Peters started Friday's game and threw seven shutout innings, striking out eight.
In the fourth inning, Anderson picked up his first big league hit, an infield single to second.
"The good ol' infield hit," he quipped. "I was surprised I made it there in time. Just getting that first one out of the way and, hopefully, they'll start coming more."
Anderson opened the season at Double-A Jacksonville, and was promoted to Triple-A New Orleans shortly after the Futures Game.
"He gets his hit, which is nice to get that out of the way," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "He also made a couple of nice plays."
Ranked by MLBPipeline.com as the Marlins' third overall prospect, Anderson started at third base and batted third against the Phillies on Friday. Peters, the club's No. 4 prospect, also made his MLB debut, getting the start.
Guerra rejoins the club after being designated for assignment on Aug. 22.
A third round Draft pick from the University of Arkansas in 2014, Anderson elevated his game in 33 games at Triple-A, posting a slash line of .339/.416/.602 with eight home runs, seven doubles and 26 RBIs.
Anderson showed signs that he was getting closer to being big league ready in Spring Training.
After getting a taste of big league camp, Anderson was optioned to Jacksonville.
"They pretty much told me they were happy with what I did," Anderson said. "They were happy with how I competed out there at a higher level, and they wanted to see me get more and more consistent and do that over the course of a full year."
Anderson got off to a slow start at Jacksonville, but picked up his game as the season progressed. In 87 games, he batted .251/.341/.450 with 14 home runs and 55 RBIs.
This year, in 120 Minor League games, Anderson had 22 home runs and 81 RBIs, with a .275/.361/.492 slash line.
"Obviously, I'd like to get him in there right away to see what he looks like," Mattingly said. "As far as the lineup goes, you never know what you're going to do. He's going to get some at-bats here down the stretch to see what he looks like."
The team had been going mostly with Derek Dietrich at third base, and Anderson is a right-handed-hitting option.
Mattingly hasn't said if the rookie will receive a majority of the time at third. Dietrich also can play second and first.
"Brian at third allows us to use Dietrich at second, we can use him at first," Mattingly said. "We can use him at third. It kind of opens up our bench a little bit to do a few more things."
Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.