Tampa Bay Rays’ Nick Anderson: The Next Superstar Reliever

Nick Anderson (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
Nick Anderson (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /
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Nick Anderson(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

Nick Anderson

Finally, this brings us to Nick Anderson. He made his major league debut last season at 28-years-old. Anderson turned 29 in July and showed Major League Baseball what it had been missing.

Anderson has a rising fastball that reaches 98mph. He has a break-neck 12-6 curveball at 83-85 that can seem impossible to hit after seeing the fastball.

By mid-season, Anderson had established himself with the Marlins to earn a few save opportunities (few and far between for the lowly fish) he ended up earning one save but his strikeout numbers caught the attention of someone in the Rays’ front office.

Through 43.2 innings pitched with the Marlins, Anderson had racked up 69 strikeouts. On top of the crazy swing-and-miss numbers, he walking a respectable 3.3 batters per nine.

The Rays pounced on Anderson at the trade deadline. They sent opener Ryne Stanek and highly regarded prospect, Jesus Sanchez for Anderson and Trevor Richards.

If the Marlins thought they were selling high on the strikeout artist, they were wrong.

Once he donned a Tampa Bay jersey, Anderson was even better.

He posted a 2.11 ERA with the Rays and lowered his walks per nine from 3.3 to 0.8 with the Rays. He walked two batters with the Rays.

With the Marlins he posted a fantastic 14.2 strikeouts per nine, but with the Rays, it was ludicrous-speed17.3 Ks per nine.

Nick Anderson is nasty. He is Josh Hader nasty. On the next slide, we will take a look at how Nick Anderson did the unimaginable last season and actually put up numbers worthy of comparing to the best relief pitcher in the game, Josh Hader.