Miami Marlins

Brian Anderson, the Marlins’ most consistent hitter, fractures hand in win vs Phillies

Marlins’ Brian Anderson talks hand injury vs Philadelphia Phillies

The Miami Marlins' Brian Anderson talks about his hand injury suffered against the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday, Aug. 23, 2019.
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The Miami Marlins' Brian Anderson talks about his hand injury suffered against the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday, Aug. 23, 2019.

X-rays revealed that Miami Marlins third baseman/right fielder Brian Anderson, the team’s most consistent hitter, suffered a fractured fifth metacarpal in his left hand after being hit by a pitch in the third inning of Friday’s 19-9 win over the Philadelphia Phillies.

The injury normally takes six to eight weeks to heal, meaning Anderson’s 2019 season — his second full major-league season — is likely over.

“Obviously I know this will probably be it this season for me,” Anderson said. “Not the news you want to hear, but it’s baseball. Stuff like this happens.”

The injury came when he was struck by a Vince Velasquez 93.9 mph four-seam fastball with the bases loaded and one out.

Anderson has been the Marlins’ most consistent hitter and really began to pick up his production after the All-Star Break. The 26-year-old in his second MLB season entered Friday hitting .284 (42 for 148) with 15 doubles, nine home runs, 27 RBI and 22 runs scored in his last 38 games.

“For me, it was I came out a little slow out of the gates. I could have done a little better,” Anderson said. “The takeaway is that I was able to turn the season around and be productive. I had a good second half until this happen. For me, it’s just a matter of continuing to get better and get more consistent. Now, it’s going to be more about ‘How can I help these guys that are here and are still putting in the work and still grinding?’ It’s going to be more of a clubhouse thing where I’m doing whatever I can to help these guys out whenever I am here and just trying to get healthy and get ready for next season.”

Anderson’s plunking came with the bases loaded and drove in the first of what would ultimately be seven runs in the third inning to tie the Phillies 7-7. The RBI hit-by-pitch also gave Anderson 66 RBI for the year — a single-season best mark.

Anderson, 26, leads Marlins starters in RBI (66), home runs (20), doubles (33), runs scored (57), slugging (.468) and OPS (.811) in 126 games.

He hit .273 with 34 doubles, 11 home runs, 65 RBI and 87 runs scored during a 2018 season that saw him finish fourth in National League Rookie of the Year voting.

“He’s a guy that’s moving forward,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. “He’s a guy that you feel that can be part of the winning formula, but as far as for right now, it’s obviously a loss.”

He has also been solid defensively. While the Marlins view him as their third baseman of the future, he split time between third and right field this year and has predominantly played in right down the stretch this season.

Fangraphs has him credited with 14 defensive runs saved — nine at third base and five in right field. His nine runs saved at third rank second among those who played at least 500 innings at the position. Anderson’s nine outfield assists are tied for sixth in MLB.

Harold Ramirez, who started the game in left field, replaced Anderson in right. Curtis Granderson entered in left and took over hitting third in the Marlins’ lineup for Anderson.

“It’s definitely frustrating,” Anderson said. “I definitely want to be in there every day, but at the end of the day you’re going to have guys step up.”

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Jordan McPherson covers the Miami Marlins and high school sports for the Miami Herald. He attended the University of Florida and covered the Gators athletic program for five years before joining the Herald staff in December 2017.