For the second time this season Bryan Anderson, who nearly won the St. Louis Cardinals' back-up catcher job out of Spring Training, is making what might be a brief trip to the majors after uncommon circumstances forced Yadier Molina out of the lineup. In July Molina spent a few days on the bereavement list, and Anderson was brought up to sit in the dugout in case Tony Cruz got hurt; Tuesday night Molina was injured in a play at the plate and Anderson's back up again, in place of utility infielder Ryan Jackson.
Theoretically, at least, Bryan Anderson is the Cardinals' offense-first ex-catching-prospect, a line-drive hitting left-hander with a less-than-stellar defensive reputation. Unfortunately, after losing the job to Cruz in the first place Anderson has proceeded to have what is by far the worst season of his career; he was hitting .225/.302/.317 in AAA Memphis when he got the call-up.
It's a long way from there to his usual numbers—last year he hit .281/.357/.409, and in 2007, the year that made him a Baseball America Top 100 prospect, he hit .298/.350/.388 as a 20-year-old starter in AA Springfield.
He's been a little better since the All-Star Break, hitting .252/.314/.398, and he has three of his six home runs in August, but this is, altogether, a year the 25-year-old would probably rather forget. He could get a start or two against right-handed pitching, but for Anderson—once one of the Cardinals' top prospects—this might be another call-up spent mostly on the bench.