The Rockies have signed right handed pitcher Brian Anderson to a minor league contract today, he spent spring training with the Dodgers and was recently released. What makes this signing interesting is that Anderson is a converted outfielder, and the 15th pick in the 2003 draft, who played in 355 major league games with a .227/.290/.370 slash line from 2005-2009. Seen as a good defensive 4th outfielder type, he started a career high 106 games for the White Sox in 2006, and would play with Chicago until being traded to the Red Sox in 2009.
In 2010, after failing to make the Royals opening day roster as an outfielder, Anderson asked the Royals to give him a chance to pitch. In July of 2010 Anderson was assigned to the Class R Arizona League Royals, pitching 4 scoreless innings while striking out 5. He would be moved up to the Class A Burlington Bees in August, followed by a promotion to the AAA Omaha Royals just 13 days later. He would finish 2010 with 17 1/3 innings pitched, striking out 17 while walking 5 over the three minor league levels.
Anderson would then be invited to spring training for the New York Yankees in 2011, but arm issues limited his velocity, and he would give up 7 hits and 4 earned runs over 1 2/3 of spring training ball. He would be assigned to AA Trenton of the Eastern League and would pick up his first professional win, along with striking out 9 batters over 7 2/3 innings over 7 games. His comeback hit a snag in May of when he was placed on the disabled list and ultimately released by the Yankees later than month.
Now Anderson is 30 years old and after surgery to remove the first rib under his collarbone, the rib that was compressing a nerve and causing the arm pain, is with the Rockies continuing his comeback, it has been reported his velocity is back up to low to mid 90′s and his cutter shows good movement. He has yet to be assigned to a minor league team.