32. RHP Chase Anderson
In his four years with the Milwaukee Brewers to close out this decade, Chase Anderson has experienced some highs and lows.
Initially acquired from the Diamondbacks prior to the 2016 season along with Aaron Hill and Isan Diaz in exchange for Jean Segura and Tyler Wagner, Anderson is the only player remaining with the organization he was traded to in this deal.
In his four seasons, Anderson has had a generally positive impact on this team.
2016: 0.2 WAR
2017: 3.1 WAR
2018: 0.1 WAR
2019: 1.1 WAR
Total WAR: 4.5
While his 2016 season ended with a 4.39 ERA and a 5.09 FIP, there were a few bright spots in there. It was a rebuilding year, so the Milwaukee Brewers were patient with him through the struggles.
It paid off in 2017, with Anderson dominating all season, emerging as the ace of the staff, and finishing with a 2.74 ERA. Anderson missed several weeks with an oblique injury after an awkward swing at the plate. He returned later in the season and was back to his dominant self, but the Brewers finished just a game shy of the postseason that year. If he had been healthy all season, one could easily argue the Brewers would’ve made the playoffs that year.
The Brewers liked what they saw and signed Anderson to a modest contract extension, with two guaranteed seasons and two club options years, buying out his arbitration years and potentially his first free agent year.
Anderson was named the Opening Day starter for 2018, which as we all know, has been a curse lately. The curse struck Anderson with a plethora of long balls. He gave up 30 home runs in 30 starts that year, which led the National League. Although his 3.93 ERA wasn’t too terrible, his 5.22 FIP indicates he was much worse, and you could tell just by watching his starts.
The Brewers made the postseason in 2018 and Anderson was left off both postseason rosters due to his struggles. Heading into 2019, Anderson was fighting for a rotation spot in spring training and lost, beginning the season in the bullpen. That didn’t last long however, as young guns Corbin Burnes and Freddy Peralta struggled in the early going, pushing Anderson into starting duty.
He performed a lot better in 2019, as shown by his WAR numbers, despite his ERA climbing to 4.21 in 32 appearances and 27 starts.
There’s a strong chance Anderson’s option gets declined this winter for $8.5MM and he could get non-tendered and become a free agent. But he made some big contributions to this team, mostly in 2017, and lands at number 32 on our list of the the Top 50 Milwaukee Brewers of the 2010s.