FROM THROWER TO PITCHER
Chris Anderson had plenty of ability as a left-handed pitcher when he was entering Portsmouth High as a 14-year-old freshman.
But there was one major flaw on the mound for Anderson.
"I was a thrower, not a pitcher, and I had a tough time with my control," Anderson recalled.
That's when Anderson met Dave Adam, a pitching guru who had played 10 seasons professionally both abroad and overseas. Adam was just starting StrikeThreeBaseball and Anderson was his first student.
Adam helped Anderson fine tune his pitching mechanics and Anderson began his climb toward earning the lofty status as one of the best scholastic pitchers in New Hampshire. Anderson, now 18, closed out a stellar high school career this past spring with a sparkling 8-1 record and 0.89 ERA while striking out 99.
"Dave taught Chris how to pitch instead of just throwing," said Anderson's father, Chris Sr. "He was pulling his head out there. Basically his mechanics were all out of whack until he worked with Dave."
Anderson's shining moment came when he led Portsmouth to its first win in the New Hampshire large division state playoffs in 16 seasons as he struck out 12 to shut out Timberlane High 4-0. The standout season earned Anderson postseason recognition as an All-State pitcher and an invite to the Twin States all-star game, where Anderson hurled four shutout innings to lead New Hampshire to a two-game sweep of Vermont.
Adam helped Anderson fine tune his curveball while also developing a change-up and two-season fastball. Another part of the tutelage was Adam teaching Anderson to outsmart batters instead of just blowing them away with a fastball that reaches the upper 80's.
"He taught Chris more as a friend," said Chris Anderson Sr. "I thinks that's why Chris has listened to what Dave was teaching him. He looks up to Dave not only as a coach but also as a friend."
Anderson is currently the ace of the Booma Post 6 American Legion team in Portsmouth before he begins play with Northern Essex Community College in Haverhill, Mass this fall. Anderson has also drawn major attention from the coaching staffs at the University of Maine and Massachusetts.
While Anderson seems to be on the right track he said he never hesitates to call Adam when he's having problems with mechanics.
"I can relate with Dave because he's taught me as a friend," Anderson said.
Anderson has also helped as a counselor with Adam at his StrikeThree camps in and around the Portsmouth. There, Anderson has witnessed Adam's dedication to helping youngsters reach their baseball ability.
What has impressed Anderson is that Adam shows the same dedication to each pupil.
"He relates to kids real well," Anderson said. "Really, he treats everyone the same and I think that helps everyone improve their game."
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