Brian Snitker isn’t concerned about Ian Anderson, but he should be

Atlanta Braves manager Brian Snitker is not worried about Ian Anderson, but he should be.

After the Atlanta Braves got thoroughly embarrassed in their 14-4 blowout loss to the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday night, Brian Snitker may need accept the fact that Ian Anderson just does not have it right now.

No doubt about it, Anderson has had many moments over the last three seasons that have made Braves Country brimming with pride whenever he toed the rubber every fifth day. However, he has been the elephant in the room when it comes to the Atlanta rotation this season. His command has not been there and the third time through the order has been his own Diophantine Equation.

Anderson lasted only two innings on Thursday night, giving up seven earned runs on seven hits, kicking his ERA on the season up to a terrible 5.31.

“I think it just was a combination of a lot of things — command, pitches … I don’t know, it’s hard when they get away from them that quick,” said Snitker in his postgame press conference in the disastrous series finale up in Philadelphia. “It’s just one of them days, man. It wasn’t a good outing. Got to flush it and get ready for the next one.”

When does it stop being a coincidence? Anderson is struggling badly and could be a Striper soon.

Atlanta Braves: Brian Snitker should be concerned over Ian Anderson’s struggles

Look. Two years ago, Braves Country would have been over the moon if Atlanta’s fourth or fifth starter was pitching like Anderson is now. Too bad the Braves are the defending World Series champions and have a divisional race it has to win over the hated New York Mets. Max Friend, Kyle Wright, Charlie Morton and even rookie Spencer Strider have been strong. Not Aqualung, though.

There are several issues plaguing Anderson’s game at the moment. The first is he has very little command, especially with his fastball. This only makes things harder for him as essentially a two-pitch pitcher at this point. His change-up is absolutely filthy when it is working, but when it gets up in the zone, balls will fly well over 400 feet into the stands. He is also pressing a bit this season.

Eventually, former ace Mike Soroka will make his triumphant return to the mound. While anything he adds to the Atlanta staff will be gravy at this point, guess whose spot in the rotation is up for grabs now? Everybody thought it was going to be a cute story with Strider getting a few starts this summer, but his stuff is too good to put him back into the bullpen. Other pitchers could get a shot.

Whether it is Tucker Davidson, Bryce Elder, Kyle Muller or Huascar Ynoa, Atlanta has a plethora of Triple-A pitchers who could spot start while Anderson tries to figure out somethings mechanically. Though Snitker may not want to send Anderson down to Triple-A Gwinnett, his perpetual Locomotive Breath is bringing the once-promising flautist down. He must pitch better next start.

There are worse problems for a team to have, but Snitker has to accept that Anderson is one now.

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