|Area of Distinction:||Baseball|
James Anderson enjoyed tremendous success as a member of the Battling Bishop baseball program from 1986 to 1989. A 1987 Second Team All-America selection and the captain of Wesleyan’s first National Championship team, his stellar career was highlighted by his being named the recipient of the 1989 John Farmer MVP Award, which is presented to the Most Valuable Player of the NCAA Division III World Series.
A native of Bumpass, Va., Anderson began his Battling Bishop tenure with a career-best .388 batting average as a freshman in 1986, and he followed that up with an All-American sophomore season that saw him tally 77 hits, 11 homeruns, and a career-high 66 runs batted in. Anderson went on to bat .349 and blast 11 more homers as a junior before helping lead his Bishops to the 1989 D-III National Championship as a senior.
The 1989 World Series, in fact, was a life-changing experience for Anderson on many different levels. On the field, the first baseman/third baseman turned in a solid tournament with a .333 batting average over six games, including three hits, a double, a run scored, and 26 putouts in the championship set. Off the field, however, Anderson was forced to deal with a personal burden when, on the night before the Bishops were to take the field against California State-Stanislaus in the title game, he and his family were informed that his brother had passed away. As his mother traveled home, Anderson stayed behind to lead his Battling Bishops to 3-0 and 8-7 victories.
The MVP award and championship victory were a fitting end to a tremendous career for Anderson. In 180 games, the two-time All-Conference selection completed his Battling Bishop career as a .347 hitter with 234 hits, 29 homeruns, 39 doubles, 370 total bases, and 171 RBIs, which all ranked in the top-five in program history at the time of his departure. Among season records at the time of his graduation, his .388 average, 77 hits, and 66 RBIs ranked in the top-three, while he currently remains in the top-five all-time in four career and/or season statistical categories.
Anderson graduated from Wesleyan in 1990 and pursued a career in law enforcement.