He also attended some showcase baseball events designed to give college programs the chance to check out several elite players. With his family, Anderson took a week to tour four Division I schools: Clemson, Kentucky, Vanderbilt and Wake Forest.
Sunday evening, the Anderson family enjoyed a celebration dinner at Bellini’s. There is certainly a lot to rejoice about.
Vanderbilt has an excellent academic reputation and also enjoyed success with pitchers. Among the alumni in the major leagues currently is Detroit’s David Price and Oakland’s Sonny Gray.
Anderson is the second Shenendehowa standout pitcher to make an oral commitment to a Division I school. Senior left-hander Bryan Warzek has decided to pitch his college baseball at the University of New Orleans.
Anderson forged a relationship with Vanderbilt pitching coach Scott Brown, who is from Liverpool and pitched at Cortland.
“When I got there, I felt that was the place for me,” Anderson said. “I loved the coaches there, which is definitely something that is important being so far away from home. … Just having a Vanderbilt degree is something not many people can say. It is such a good school academically. It sets you apart.”
As a sophomore, Anderson earned first-team large-school honors from the Times Union after going 6-0 with two saves and a sparkling 0.43 earned-run average. Anderson allowed only 18 hits and eight walks over 34 innings of work and struck out 34.
Anderson said getting the trust from Shenendehowa head coach Greg Christodulu and pitching coach Keith Lansley was vital. The Plainsmen won their second straight Section II Class AA in 2014 and advanced to the state final.
“It was really important to work with coach Lansley and coach Christodulu. They have both helped me a ton to get to where I am now,” Anderson said. “Getting the experience of playing against the older kids really helped my development.”
On the day Shenendehowa competed in the state semifinals and final, Bob Anderson — the father of Ian his twin brother Ben — was leading his Schalmont squad to the state Class B title. Bob Anderson stepped down after the season in order coach his sons during the summer and watch them play their final two varsity seasons for the Plainsmen.
“We have an excellent team coming back and we’d like to make another run at winning a state title,” Ian Anderson said. “Having my college choice made is good. I can put my focus of getting good grades and helping us try to win a state title.”