Brewers Rumors: Is A Reunion With Lefty Brett Anderson Possible?
By Tyler Koerth
Brett Anderson spent his last two seasons in MLB as a member of the Brewers. After hitting the free agent market, Anderson ended up not signing with a team in 2022. The southpaw never announced his retirement and now has his sights set on pitching again in 2023.
According to Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic, the soon to be 35 year old wants to pitch at the MLB level again next season. Having not pitched in a year, this means that a showcase is likely in his future sometime this offseason.
Should the Brewers consider a reunion with pitcher Brett Anderson?
As a member of the Brewers, Anderson pitched 143 innings over two seasons. His first year with the team was the shortened 2020 season. In 2021, he made 24 starts and pitched to a 4.22 ERA. The Brewers hardly ever let him work a third time through the lineup, but he did cover 96 innings in total.
A big limiting factor in Anderson's last season with the Brewers was injuries. In 2021 he had three different appearances on the injured list. He has sustained quite a few injuries over his career and has made 20 or more starts in a season just four times throughout his 13 year career.
When he was last on the mound, Anderson topped out around 90 MPH with his fastball/sinker. He is a pitch to contact type player who has a career 59% ground ball rate. At times, opposing batters have made lots of hard contact against him.
With the extreme shift going away as a part of the rule changes coming in the 2023 season, it's possible that more batted balls go for base hits. This rule change could impact Anderson's game in which defensive positioning has benefited him in the past.
If the Brewers were to pursue Anderson, it would be to provide pitching depth. The only starting rotation spot that may be up for grabs is the fifth spot (or sixth if the Brewers go that route again) in which Adrian Houser, Aaron Ashby, and Janson Junk will compete for. Corbin Burnes, Brandon Woodruff, Freddy Peralta, and Eric Lauer have the 1-4 spots locked down.
Given Anderson injury history, previous performance track record, and current roster makeup, it is hard to image the Brewers signing him to a major league deal that reports indicate he is seeking. A minor league deal with an invite to spring training seems more possible.