Tim Anderson, the former East Central Community College star, found himself in the leadoff spot for the Chicago White Sox on Saturday. Apparently, he likes it there. Anderson hit two home runs, drove in a career-high four runs and scored three times to fuel an 8-4 win at Detroit’s Comerica Park. The reedy (6 feet 1, 185 pounds) shortstop is batting .246 with 10 homers, 18 RBIs and 11 steals. He leads all Mississippians in the majors in homers and steals. His second bomb, a three-run shot, on Saturday came off Louis Coleman, the pride of Schlater, and put the White Sox up 7-3 in the sixth. “I’m having a hot streak right now,” Anderson, who also homered on Friday, told The Associated Press. Anderson hit fifth on Friday, seventh on Thursday and eighth on Wednesday after not playing on Tuesday. Apparently, the White Sox, having a brutal season, are searching for a lineup that clicks. Maybe they found something. Anderson, a 2013 first-rounder out of ECCC now in his third MLB campaign, has shown flashes of stardom. He hit .257 last year with 17 homers, 56 RBIs and 15 steals after batting .283 as a rookie. P.S. Coleman wasn’t the only Magnolia State product to yield a homer on Saturday. Chris Stratton, the Tupelo native and Mississippi State alum, gave up two bombs but got the win as San Francisco beat the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. Stratton, now 6-3 with a 4.97 ERA, allowed three runs in five innings. Kyle Schwarber and Javier Baez took him deep. Ex-Ole Miss standout Drew Pomeranz allowed a homer to Atlanta’s Dansby Swanson and lasted just 3 1/3 innings for Boston, which rallied to beat the Braves 8-6 at Fenway Park. There is speculation that Pomeranz may be moved to the bullpen.
It’s becoming clear what kind of hitter Tim Anderson is. In a word: streaky. The East Central Community College product, now the Chicago White Sox’s shortstop, went 2-for-4 on Tuesday to boost his September average to .405. Anderson batted .204 in April but rebounded to hit .319 in May. He hit a summer swoon in June and July, batting .206. He started hot in August, hitting safely in 14 of his first 16 games that month before cooling off. But he has cranked it back up in September. He has three three-hit games this month and is up to .252 for the year with 16 homers, 60 RBIs and nine steals. He hit .283 as a rookie. White Sox fans best get used to this streakiness: Anderson, drafted 17th overall out of ECCC in 2013, is signed for five more years. P.S. Some magic numbers from Tuesday: Southern Miss alum Brian Dozier hit his 30th homer, marking the second time he has reached that figure. He was a double shy of a cycle in Minnesota’s 16-0 drubbing of San Diego. … Ex-Ole Miss star Zack Cozart reached the 20-homer plateau for the first time, taking former Rebels teammate Lance Lynn deep. But Lynn, now 11-7, won the day as St. Louis whipped Cincinnati 13-4. … Former Mississippi Braves standout Ozzie Albies stretched his hitting streak to 10 games as Atlanta zapped Washington 8-0. Albies, the rookie second baseman, went 3-for-5 with his third homer and is hitting .293 with 18 RBIs in 39 games.
His team has the worst record in the American League, and he’s not having such a good year, either. So that first career walk-off hit on Wednesday night and the subsequent Gatorade shower had to feel pretty good to Tim Anderson. “I’m going to enjoy it and wear it until tomorrow,” the ex-East Central Community College star told csnchicago.com. Anderson’s ninth-inning single scored Avisail Garcia and the Chicago White Sox beat playoff-contender Minnesota 4-3 at Guaranteed Rate Field. Though his bat has perked up a bit this month, Anderson was in a 1-for-20 slump when he stepped to the plate in the ninth on Wednesday. He is hitting .239 on the year after batting .283 as a rookie in 2016. He has produced 14 homers, 42 RBIs and 49 runs but hasn’t been the base-stealing threat (six bags) he was projected to be as a first-round pick in 2013. At shortstop, Anderson has 25 errors and a .944 fielding percentage, well below league average. But for one night, at least, he soaked in some glory – and some Gatorade. P.S. Cincinnati’s Mississippi-flavored lineup did not produce an appetizing result on Wednesday. The Reds started Taylorsville’s Billy Hamilton in center field, Ole Miss product Zack Cozart at short and UM alum Stuart Turner at catcher. Alas, they went 2-for-10 in a 9-3 loss to the Chicago Cubs.
These are trying times for Tim Anderson, the former East Central Community College standout and current Chicago White Sox shortstop. Anderson is away from the team this weekend, attending the funeral of a longtime friend who was shot and killed last weekend in Anderson’s hometown of Tuscaloosa, Ala. Anderson has been struggling on the field most of this season. He is hitting .221 with two homers and two steals in 29 games, and his defense also has been spotty. After a strong rookie season (.283, nine homers, 10 bags) in 2016, Anderson signed a 6-year, $25 million contract in the off-season. The White Sox drafted Anderson 17th overall in 2013, the year he led ECCC to a state championship. Obviously, the organization believes in him and believes he’ll bounce back from this adversity. As manager Rick Renteria told theathletic.com, “Experiences occur and you deal with them and then you hopefully grow with them.” Anderson is scheduled to return to the club on Monday in Anaheim, where they’ll play the Angels. We should wish him well. P.S. Adam Frazier, activated from the disabled list on Friday, was back in the Pittsburgh lineup on Saturday, batting leadoff and playing left field. The ex-Mississippi State star, who had been sidelined with a hamstring injury, went 1-for-5 as the Pirates beat Arizona 4-3 to stop a six-game skid. Utility man Frazier is hitting .291 with five RBIs and five runs.
Former East Central Community College star Tim Anderson has been called up by the Chicago White Sox and likely will be in the lineup tonight against Kansas City. The highly rated shortstop prospect, 22, was batting .304 with four homers, 20 RBIs and 11 steals at Triple-A Charlotte. Anderson led ECCC to the MACJC championship in 2013 and was drafted in the first round that same year. He was a Southern League All-Star for Birmingham in 2015.
With the best record in the American League, the Chicago White Sox don’t appear to need a lot of help at the moment. But when they do, Tim Anderson may be ready. The former East Central Community College standout, now playing at Triple-A Charlotte, had a four-hit game on Thursday that included his first home run of the season. He is batting .333 over his last 10 games to boost his average to .278, and he has 10 RBIs, 20 runs and seven steals over 30 games in his first taste of Triple-A ball. Anderson, 22, a shortstop, started slow this year but is beginning to play like the highly rated prospect that he is. “I’ve been a believer in myself, and I’m just glad the results are showing,” he told milb.com. P.S. Also toiling in Triple-A and looking for that first big league call-up, ex-Mississippi State star Hunter Renfroe is batting .285 with five homers and 20 RBIs at El Paso in the San Diego system. He is close. So, too, is Northwest Mississippi CC product Cody Reed, 2-1 with a 1.88 ERA in five starts at Triple-A Louisville in Cincinnati’s system. And State alum Adam Frazier, playing mostly outfield this year, is hitting .292 for Pittsburgh’s Indianapolis club. Meanwhile, Tyler Moore and Joey Butler are lodged in Triple-A and trying to get back to the The Show. Moore, a State product, is hitting .242 with a homer and 10 RBIs at Gwinnett in Atlanta’s system, while Gulf Coast CC alum Butler, playing for Cleveland’s Columbus team, is at .238 with two homers and 11 RBIs.
It might be a good time to invest in some Tim Anderson rookie cards. A web site devoted to such things reveals that the average price of a rookie card of the former East Central Community College standout is $4.96. But one card, a “2013 Leaf Draft Superfractor RC Rookie Auto Autograph 1/1,” sold for $58 in January of 2015. Anderson hasn’t played a big league game yet. He was sent down to Triple-A Charlotte by the Chicago White Sox on Thursday, but it won’t be long before the highly rated prospect assumes the shortstop job at Comiskey Park. Could be this summer. A first-round pick (17th overall) out of ECCC in 2013, Anderson put up some great numbers at Double-A Birmingham in 2015: .312, 12 triples, 49 steals, 79 runs and 46 RBIs in 125 games. Some might remember that he homered at Trustmark Park in Pearl in his first Southern League game back in 2014. He has been in the White Sox’s big league spring camp the last two years and made an impression. “The biggest thing for me seeing him in the last couple years is, defensively, he just looks so much better and confident,” ChiSox manager Robin Ventura told mlb.com. Buy low, they say. Might be a good time to load up on some Tim Anderson rookies.