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Blue Anchors sign two pitchers, hire coach

The Alexandria Blue Anchors’ front office recently announced the addition of two pitchers to its roster and the hiring of a new assistant coach for the 2014 season.
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Pitcher Drew Smith, a sophomore at Dallas Baptist University, and freshman South Dakota State University pitcher Ryan Froom are both joining the Blue Anchors roster for 2014.

Joe Anthonsen will be the new assistant coach for the Blue Anchors in the upcoming season. Anthonsen is working as an assistant coach of the St. Thomas University baseball team this spring.


Smith will join the Blue Anchors this season upon completion of his second year on the Dallas Baptist University baseball team.

In his freshman year, Smith finished with a 0-1 record and a 5.40 ERA over seven appearances, including one start.

“We are happy to have a player of Drew’s ability coming to Alexandria for the summer,” Blue Anchors General Manger Kendall Hughson said in a press release. “Drew is not only a contributor on the mound; he is a kid that works hard in the classroom as well. He is a true student athlete.”

In 2013, Drew Smith also played summer baseball with the Mat-Su Miners of the Alaska Baseball league. There he made 14 relief appearances while finishing with a 3.70 ERA and five saves.


The Blue Anchors expect Froom to be a pitcher who can come out of the bullpen and make a few spot starts this season.

Froom is a native of Crystal, Minnesota, and gained experience through the Minnesota blizzard baseball program while attending St. Louis Park High School.

“Ryan Froom is going to be a big help in the bullpen for us,” Blue Anchors owner Adam Barta said. “He’s got an above-average breaking ball that he throws for strikes, and he’s got a good down angle on his fastball. He is pretty versatile, so he’ll be able to spot start, be a long relief guy and can be a situational righty late in the game.”

Froom will join the team after completing his freshman year at SDSU.


Anthonsen joins the Blue Anchors this season after wrapping up a seven year professional baseball career.

He played college baseball at Iowa Central Community College and Campbell University before moving on to a career playing baseball. His professional experience includes time as a member of the Rockford Riverhawks, Sioux Falls Canaries and the Amarillo Sox.

“I’m excited to experience the Northwoods League first hand,” Anthonsen said in a press release. “I’ve heard nothing but great things about the league and the town of Alexandria. Being able to help college athletes reach their dreams of playing professional baseball is something I am really looking forward to.”

The Blue Anchors front office figures Anthonsen’s career experiences will help their players in the upcoming season. Anthonsen will give the players another coach who has played baseball beyond the collegiate level along with former seven-year Major League Baseball veteran and current Blue Anchors Manager Al Newman.

“(Anthonsen’s) playing career along with his coaching experience will give our players another coach that knows what it takes to make it to the next level,” Hughson said.

The Blue Anchors will begin the 2014 season with a home game on Tuesday, May 27 versus the Mankato Moondogs.

Blaze Fugina

Blaze Fugina is the sports editor of the Woodbury and South Washington County Bulletin newspapers. Previously, Blaze worked as a sports editor for the Pierce County Herald and a sports reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in May of 2011. You can follow Blaze on Twitter at @BlazeFugina.

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