Dodgers News: Tyler Anderson Focused On Being ‘Ready To Go’ Amid Uncertainty

The Los Angeles Dodgers altered their starting pitching based on how the first three games against the San Diego Padres went in the National League Division Series, but that hasn’t changed how Tyler Anderson has prepared for this postseason stretch.

Regardless of the fact that the Dodgers won 14 of 19 matchups with the Padres in the regular season, the magnitude of the playoffs heightens the best and worst on the diamond. The Dodgers didn’t set a franchise record with poor play, they achieved that with consistent starting pitching, which included a career year from Anderson.

Heading into the NLDS, manager Dave Roberts and the Dodgers didn’t set their starting rotation past Game 2, and because of that, Anderson committed to being as flexible as possible in whichever role the team needs.

“I just think that you never really know if you are where you want to be. I do think being in the bullpen early on in the year helps me have a routine for both,” Anderson said. “So if you want me to pitch out of the ‘pen, I’ll come out of that. Or if you want me to start, taking care of your body and being available and fresh and ready to go.”

On the season, Anderson posted a 2.57 ERA, 1.00 WHIP and 3.31 in 30 appearances (28 starts). Over the course of the year, he logged four starts against the Padres and in 24 innings pitched, logged a 2-0 record with a 1.88 ERA.

Two of those starts came in Petco Park in which he totaled 10.2 innings, allowing four runs on seven hits. Facing the same opponent more than a few times in the regular season creates a familiarity factor that undoubtedly factors into the game plan for the postseason.

“I think there’s definitely some of that to it. Sometimes their approaches change. The more they see you and vice versa and just trying to stay ahead of what their approach might be and what guys are trying to do and kind of feel that out,” Anderson said.

“Fortunately, we have unbelievable catchers with both (Austin) Barnes and (Will) Smith. Both those guys are so good that they’re really good at feeling that out as well. It’s just kind of a game-planning thing in general.”

While Anderson was initially presumed to be a Game 3 starter, he now takes the mound with the Dodgers looking to stave off elimination and get the NLDS back to Dodger Stadium.

How Tyler Anderson approached postseason role

The Dodgers went with Tony Gonsolin in Game 3, but seeing as Anderson had a career year with L.A., his consistency for 178.2 innings in the regular season made him a workhorse.

His minor struggles this season were minor blips on the radar, and highs were near no-hit bids and unbelievable scoreless innings streaks. Anderson’s year didn’t begin as a starter, in fact his initial two appearances were piggyback outings behind Gonsolin at the beginning of April in which he excelled.

Anderson’s versatility and consistency are something of great value, and coming into the NLDS, he was ready for anything.

“I’ll tell you what I told them. It’s that whenever you want me to pitch, I’m available,” Anderson said earlier in the week.

“If you want me to pitch [Wednesday], I’m available. If you want me to pitch Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and you want me to pitch tomorrow in live BP so guys can face left-handed pitching, I’ll pitch then too. I don’t know what the plan is going to be, but I’m available whenever they need me to pitch.”

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