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Anderson dazzles in big league debut for Braves

Club's third-ranked prospect gives up one hit, run over six innings
The lone hit Ian Anderson allowed in his Major League debut was a long ball by Luke Voit. (Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
August 27, 2020

Ian Anderson had to wait an extra day before making his first start in the Major Leagues. It apparently didn't do him any harm. Atlanta's third-ranked prospect allowed just one hit -- a home run by Luke Voit -- en route to the Braves' 5-1 win over the Yankees in

Ian Anderson had to wait an extra day before making his first start in the Major Leagues. It apparently didn't do him any harm.

Atlanta's third-ranked prospect allowed just one hit -- a home run by Luke Voit -- en route to the Braves' 5-1 win over the Yankees in the first game of Wednesday's doubleheader sweep. Anderson took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning before giving up Voit's 11th of the year. He struck out six, walked two and hit a batter.

“Obviously my goal is to be here and stay here,” the 22-year-old told reporters after the game. “Today, I was able to show that a little bit. I’m definitely looking forward to hopefully getting another shot at it and see what we can do from there.”

Anderson (1-0) threw 90 pitches, 55 for strikes. The third overall pick in the 2016 Draft out of an upstate New York high school pitched to contact for much of the outing and retired the first eight in order before taking his no-hit bid into the sixth.

“It was pretty impressive,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “He slowed [the game] down well. He had confidence in his pitches. He wasn’t afraid of anything, I know that. He trusted his stuff. He got in the strike zone with those guys and that was really, really fun to watch.”

A seven-inning no-hitter may not count in the Major League record books, but Snitker wasn't planning on letting his rookie go the distance in the seven-inning doubleheader game anyway. “He was done after the sixth," he said. “[Throwing] 90 pitches at the alternate [training] site and 90 pitches here against the New York Yankees is a completely different animal. But he didn’t seem spent when I went over to talk to him.”

Even the opposition was impressed.

“He pitched well," Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. "We knew he had good stuff coming in. I thought he did a good job of attacking the strike zone and being a little unpredictable. He had the advantage of us not seeing him much at all. I thought he did a good job when he did get behind in some counts of being unpredictable, the ability to strike his secondary pitches, but not being afraid to be aggressive with his fastball.”

Despite sitting atop the National League East, Atlanta has had troubles with its starting rotation. Mike Soroka is out for the season with a torn right Achilles tendon, and the club's other hurlers -- Touki Toussaint, Kyle Wright, Mike Foltynewicz and Sean Newcomb have struggled to the point that they've been reassigned the team's alternate training site at Triple-A Gwinnett. Enter baseball's No. 42 overall prospect.

Anderson was coming off a season in which he notched a 3.38 ERA and 1.25 WHIP over 135 2/3 innings between Gwinnett and Double-A Mississippi. He went seven innings and struck out a career-high 14 while combining on a no-hitter with Atlanta's No. 28 prospect Jeremy Walker for the M-Braves against Jackson last June 28. His 172 strikeouts were a career high and tied for fourth-highest in the Minors. He struggled with the Stripers, though, posting a 6.57 ERA with 18 walks over 24 2/3 innings after an August promotion to Gwinnett.

The 6-foot-3 right-hander showcases three pitches with above-average potential in his fastball, curveball and changeup. The fastball sat in the low-90s last season but can bear down on hitters from Anderson's over-the-top delivery. The curveball, which features a low spin rate, works with a 12-to-6 movement that garners plenty of strikeouts, and his changeup has improved enough to get him into the starting rotation.

In other action:

Phillies 3, Nationals 2

Philadelphia's top prospect Alec Bohm ripped a game-tying single in the seventh inning on the first pitch he saw from Nationals reliever Will Harris. The No. 31 overall prospect went 1-for-4. Since making his big league debut on Aug. 13, Bohm has compiled a slash line of .317/.417/.463 with four extra-base hits and six RBIs. Washington's second-ranked prospect Luis Garcia went 1-for-4 with his first stolen base in the Majors. Box score

Rockies 8, D-backs 7

Colorado's top prospect Brendan Rodgers worked a full count in the fourth off Arizona starter Robbie Ray before connecting on a double, his first extra-base hit since being recalled from the Rockies' alternate training site on Aug. 19. The two-bagger was Rodgers' lone hit in five at-bats. No. 21 Josh Fuentes singled and stole his first bag of the season in the seventh. Third-ranked Arizona prospect Daulton Varsho entered the game in the ninth as a pinch-runner and picked up his first career stolen base. Box score

Rays 4, Orioles 3

Fifth-ranked Baltimore prospect Ryan Mountcastle collected two hits in four at-bats. He's batting .375 in 16 games this season. In his second big league outing, No. 13 prospect Keegan Akin induced a groundout to first base from Austin Meadows, the only batter he faced to end the sixth. Box score

White Sox 10, Pirates 3

Chicago's No. 19 prospect Danny Mendick belted his third home run of the year -- a two-run shot to right field -- on a 2-for-4 afternoon. Luis Robert, the No. 3 overall prospect, went hitless in three at-bats for the White Sox, but plated the game's first run out of the No. 7 spot with a sacrifice fly to center in the second. Box score

Blue Jays 9, Red Sox 1

Toronto's No. 26 prospect Julian Merryweather got the start and allowed one hit while striking out three over two innings before exiting the game. The 28-year-old righty hasn't given up a run in three appearances spanning 5 1/3 frames since making his big league debut this year. No. 23 Santiago Espinal went 2-for-3 with a walk and a run scored. He's batting .270 over 15 games. Box score

Cardinals 6, Royals 5

Top St. Louis prospect Dylan Carlson reached base twice and drove in a run in the walk-off win, but left seven men on base. Batting ninth, the 21-year-old ripped an RBI double to left in the fourth. In the ninth, the No. 18 overall prospect worked a two-out walk to load the bases and the Cardinals walked off on a walk by Kolten Wong. Genesis Cabrera, the club's No. 11 prospect, surrendered a home run to Ryan McBroom while allowing two hits and fanning one in the eighth. Box score

Mets 5, Marlins 4

Miami's eighth-ranked prospect Lewin Diaz led off the top of the fifth with a line-drive single off Mets starter Jacob deGrom. The 23-year-old is hitting .222 through 18 games. No. 3 Jesus Sanchez struck out in a pinch-hit appearance in the eighth. Box score

Tigers 7, Cubs 6

Bryan Garcia, Detroit's No. 17 prospect, allowed a hit and a walk in two-thirds of an inning, but earned the hold. The 25-year-old right-hander lowered his ERA to 2.25. Sixth-ranked Isaac Paredes went hitless in four at-bats. Paredes, who debuted on Aug. 17, is batting .269 with a homer, four RBIs and a .790 OPS through eight games. Box score

Athletics 3, Rangers 1

Texas' No. 25 prospect Kyle Cody allowed a hit and a walk in one scoreless frame of relief. Third-ranked Leody Taveras went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts out of the No. 9 spot. Oakland's No. 2 prospect Sean Murphy was hitless in four at-bats and left seven men on base. Box score

Paige Schector is an editor for