Anderson dominant in debut as D-backs win another series
CHICAGO (AP) — Chase Anderson needed one pitch to remind himself it was still the same game he’s been playing all his life. After that, his major league debut became thoroughly enjoyable.
Anderson pitched impressively into the sixth inning and Gerardo Parra and Miguel Montero homered as the Arizona Diamondbacks beat the Chicago White Sox 5-1 on Sunday.
Recalled Tuesday from Double-A Mobile, Anderson (1-0) hadn’t seen any action until getting the start Sunday. He retired 12 consecutive batters at one point and yielded one run and only two hits in 5 1/3 innings while striking out six, helping the D-backs win for the fourth time in five games and secure their third consecutive series for the first time since June 2012.
Anderson, 26, was the team’s ninth-round selection in the 2009 draft and made it to Triple-A last season before going back to Double-A this year, where he was 4-2 with an 0.69 ERA.
"After I threw the first pitches I was like, ‘OK, this is the same game,’ and it calmed me down right there," Anderson said. "I just tried to attack the hitters. It was fun."
Manager Kirk Gibson was full of praise for Anderson.
"He had all his pitches working," Gibson said. "He just hit his spots."
Anderson wasn’t the only positive development for Arizona, which improved to 6-3 in May after a dreadful 9-19 in April. Brad Ziegler threw a perfect eighth to extend his scoreless-outings streak to 18 over 17 1/3 innings.
Anderson was backed by homers from Parra and Montero. Parra’s fifth-inning drive off Hector Noesi (0-3) gave the Diamondbaks a 3-0 lead, and Montero’s with one out in the ninth off Frank Francisco pushed the advantage to 5-1.
Parra also started the game with a triple before scoring, extending his streak of getting on base to 18 games. Montero reached five times with two hits, two walks and getting hit-by-pitch.
"We knew we were a better team than what we’d showed," Montero said.
On the other hand, during a brief postgame session with reporters, White Sox manager Robin Ventura blasted his team.
"(Anderson) threw well, but it was pretty uninspired by us all the way through," Ventura said. "It started from the first play of the game and continued on, and it stunk, pretty much the whole thing. Hector pitched a heck of a game to at least give us a chance. Everything else stunk."
Noesi was solid but needed more help, going six innings and allowing three runs and eight hits while throwing 117 pitches. The White Sox were limited to just four hits.
"There is a lot of guys you’ve never seen before that come out there and, ‘See ball, hit ball.’ You just recognize pitches. After you see it once, you really don’t have an excuse," White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers said. "Tip your hat a little bit. (Anderson) made some pitches, hit some spots, and when you hit spots and change speeds, it’s pretty challenging."
The White Sox fell behind 1-0 in the first thanks in part to shaky defense, which Ventura referenced.
Parra led off the game with what appeared to be a routine fly to center, but Alejandro De Aza misjudged it and stumbled before missing the ball, allowing Parra to get to third on what was ruled a triple. Martin Prado followed with a sharp single to right to bring in Parra and give the Diamondbacks an early lead.
"I don’t know. They were just flat, couldn’t get anything going," Ventura said. "Something is going to happen. I don’t know what yet, but something."
NOTES: D-backs manager Kirk Gibson appreciates how baseball recognizes Mother’s Day. Gibson’s sister in-law, Lori Sklarski, died of breast cancer in 2011. He wears a white wristband with the numbers 11-11 written on it in honor of Sklarski’s birthday. … White Sox bench coach Mark Parent said OF Adam Eaton (strained right hamstring) will begin a rehab assignment later this week with Triple-A Charlotte and then "probably" return to the White Sox on Sunday in Houston. Eaton was placed on the disabled list May 3. … White Sox manager Robin Ventura returned to the team for Sunday’s game after attending his daughter Rachel’s graduation Saturday from Oklahoma State. Parent managed the team Saturday night and addressed the media prior to Sunday’s game before Ventura returned.