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Top Prospects: Chase Anderson, RHP, D-backs

D-backs right-hander Chase Anderson played catch with fellow pitcher Josh Collmenter on the outfield grass of U.S. Cellular Field on Saturday afternoon and afterward stood in the visitors' dugout and talked about his upcoming Major League debut.

"Excited, anxious, nervous -- all of the above," Anderson said. "But it's every kid's dream to be here. I'm very fortunate just to get the opportunity to be here. Especially with the team that drafted me, the D-backs, to make my debut with them is an honor."

Anderson will start the Interleague series finale Sunday afternoon against White Sox right-hander Hector Noesi.

In six starts for Double-A Mobile, Anderson had a 0.69 ERA and he takes the spot in the rotation that had been filled by Mike Bolsinger, who was optioned to Triple-A Reno last week.

"Fastball command was there with me every start I had," Anderson said. "I was able to throw my curveball for strikes and to strike some guys out. That complements my change-up. That's probably what I'm going to try to do the best I can up here."

One of the biggest challenges Anderson will face will be Chicago slugger Jose Abreu, who has been red-hot to start the year.

An ankle injury limited Abreu to being the designated hitter in the first two games, but it has not impacted his bat.

"He has that something in him that just enables him to work through it," said White Sox bench coach Mark Parent, who filled in for manager Robin Ventura on Saturday. "He fouled a ball off his foot last night, checked it out and it was fine. I think one of the main things is we're playing at home and the fans are starting to appreciate him and coming to see him play and he wants to play well for them. That's pretty cool."

There may be plenty of fans coming Sunday to see Abreu, but there will be around 15 members of Anderson's family on hand that will be cheering for the D-backs.

Included in that group is Anderson's mom, Michele Hyde, and watching her son pitch in the big leagues will be a nice Mother's Day gift.

"Making my debut and then making it on Mother's Day?" Anderson said. "It's going to be fun, especially since I just got just married in November. We're going to have kids some day, so she'll be a mom one day. My mom, obviously, and my mother in-law, are all going to be here. It's going to be very special so hopefully I can put some zeros up."

D-backs: Keep it simple
When there is a runner on second base a catcher will generally run through a series of signs to make it difficult for the runner to somehow communicate to the batter what pitch is coming.

Most teams allow their pitchers to come up with their own set of signs, but the D-backs have a standardized set.

That might change given that it's Anderson's debut.

"For him to be out on the mound and try to implement a new system and having to deal with all the other emotions that come with your MLB debut is just ridiculous," veteran right-hander Bronson Arroyo said. "So for that day no matter what you go with what's comfortable for you because that's something [taken] off your plate."

White Sox: Greenlight success
The White Sox picked up an Alexei Ramirez grand slam and a 442-foot Jose Abreu home run when giving the green light to their hitters on 3-0 counts during Friday's 9-3 victory. But according to White Sox hitting coach Todd Steverson, there's no exact rule on when to swing and when to take.

"It could be just how they took the first three," Steverson said. "Obviously how good they have been feeling. Sometimes it's just a hunch on Robin's part."

White Sox manager Robin Ventura is the one who makes the 3-0 call, and Steverson believes that 98 or 99 percent of the time it's a guaranteed fastball and typically something a hitter can time up. It might be an opportunity for a hitter in a funk to get going or a hitter on a hot streak, such as Ramirez and Abreu, to keep going.

"If you got a chance to blow the game open, it can backfire on you," Steverson said. "If you pop it up, it's like, 'What are you doing?' It's a hunch really, and it worked out both times [Friday] night."

Worth noting:
• The White Sox hit the road after Sunday's game for a nine-game trip to Oakland, Houston and Kansas City.

• The D-backs, meanwhile, head home for six games against the Nationals and Dodgers.

• D-backs third baseman Eric Chavez owns the longest homer by an opponent at U.S. Cellular Field and the third-longest overall with a 490-foot homer on April 26, 2001, when he was playing for the A's.

• Ventura, who missed Saturday night's game to attend the graduation of his daughter, Rachel, from Oklahoma State University, is expected to return for Sunday's contest.

• Noesi is 0-3 with a 4.66 ERA in nine career Interleague games (four starts). Comments