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Foresters Go Big With Texans on 2017 Roster

Defending national champions play home opener Friday at Pershing Park

The Santa Barbara Foresters have won six National Baseball Congress World Series titles. Click to view larger
The Santa Barbara Foresters have won six National Baseball Congress World Series titles. (Noozhawk file photo)

The Santa Barbara Foresters loaded up on ballplayers from Texas for their 2017 summer baseball season.

The six-time national champions open their season with road games at the Southern California Catch in La Mirada on Tuesday, the MLB Academy in Compton Wednesday and the Orange County Riptide in Irvine on Thursday.

The home opener is on Friday at their new home of Pershing Park against the Orange County Riptide at 6 p.m.

The Foresters have been hard at work upgrading the field at Pershing for their first full season downtown.


Manager Bill Pintard has 13 players on his roster that played their college ball at Texas schools. Texas Tech and the University of Texas lead the way with four each, followed by TCU with three and Rice and Division 2 St. Edwards-Austin with one apiece.

Pitcher Tanner Lawson is from St. Edwards. He played last summer on the Foresters’ National Baseball Congress World Series championship team. At St. Edwards, he went 2-2 this spring, he went 2-2 with a 2.22 ERA, striking out 53 batters. in 52.2 innings.

Texas Tech is sending two solid right-handed pitchers in Ryan Shetter and John McMillon. Shetter went 4-1 and struck out 74 in 70.1 innings. McMillon, an outfield and reliever, had a 1.75 ERA in 25.2 innings, with 29 strikeouts.

Also from the Red Raiders are pitcher Jake McDonald and shortstop Josh Jung, who batted .306 and drove in 43 runs. 

Texas Tech was knocked out of the NCAA Tournament by Sam Houston State.

A quartet of freshmen from Texas is led by third baseman Ryan Reynolds, the son of former major league pitcher Shane Reynolds. Reynold, pitcher Blair Henley, outfielder Austin Todd and infielder David Hamilton were all impact players for the Longhorns, who went 39-24 and made the NCAA Tournament. They were eliminated by Long Beach State.

The Forester players from TCU, Cal State Fullerton and Vanderbilt will be unavailable for the early-season games because they playing in the NCAA Super Regionals.

The other colleges represented on the squad include Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Oregon, West Virginia, Columbia, George Washington, Cal Poly, BYU, Tennessee, Richmond, Westmont and SBCC.

The Westmont player is infielder Brody Weiss The SBCC representatives include pitcher Kyle Wade, shortstop Wes Ghan-Gibson and slugging third baseman John Jensen, the MVP of the Western State Conference North Division.

Recent high school graduates left-handed pitcher Ian Churchill of San Marcos at outfielder Colter Nisbet from Dos Pueblos, are on the roster for the early part of the season.

Foresters games can be heard on the radio at 1290 AM, with John Martony calling the action.

Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk Sports on Twitter: @NoozhawkSports. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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