Every summer, Santa Barbara Foresters manager Bill Pintard receives talent from many of the top college baseball programs in the country.
From the SEC to the Big 12 and Pac-12, the roster is loaded with young prospects from Division 1 schools that are perennial NCAA tournament participants.
But there’s a uniqueness to this year’s team that is in Wichita, Kan. to seek a fourth straight National Baseball Congress World Series title. Two key players on the squad played their college ball just down the road at Westmont.
Pitcher Sean Youngerman and utilityman Daniel Patterson were members of the Warriors team that won the NAIA World Series in June. They have made significant impacts on a Foresters team that has 23 of its 31 players on Division-I rosters.
While it’s common to see Westmont players on the Forester roster early in the summer, as they are traditionally used as temps before players from Division-I teams end their seasons, especially those that go far in the postseason.
What’s not as common is to see the Warriors stick around, as Youngerman and Patterson have. In fact, it wasn’t Pintard’s plan to keep them around deep into the summer.
Foresters and Westmont College pitching coach Rick Hubbard brought up Youngerman’s name to Pintard as a potential rental arm for the first few weeks of play.
Pintard decided to bring Youngerman in along with Patterson and other Westmont players to fill roster spots.
Youngerman and Patterson became fixtures on the team.
“They’re a big part of our club,” Pintard said of his Warriors. “We’re very fortunate to have these guys.”
Pintard did not expect to get ace-level production from the right-handed Youngerman. But that’s exactly what he has provided.
He is second on the team in innings pitched with 24.2, leads the team in ERA with a mark of 0.37, is third in strikeouts with 27 and is second in opposing on-base percentage, holding opponents to a .220 average.
“Youngerman pitched really well out of the bullpen for us early and then we put him in the starting role and he was part of a no-hitter,” Pintard said. “We’re very thin right now but he has come through and really helped us.”
The summer success followed up a solid freshman season at Westmont. He struck out 33 batters in 30.1 innings while logging a 2.97 ERA.
Patterson, meanwhile, started just 14 games with the Warriors in 2023 and hit .222 in 54 total at-bats.
With the Foresters, he’s had 118 at-bats, with 33 hits (third on the team) for a fifth-best .280 average. He leads the squad with 23 runs scored and ranked sixth in the California Collegiate League with 11 stolen bases.
He has achieved all of this while serving as the Foresters’ primary leadoff hitter.
“We put Patterson in the leadoff role and we can’t get him out of there,” Pintard said. “He’s been one of our most valuable players on this team.
“He plays with his hair on fire and he fires up the dugout.”
Youngerman and Patterson have been perfect examples of a belief that Pintard has always held.
“We’ve never been snobs about players being D1 or D2 or whatever level,” he said. “If you’re a good person, you add to the chemistry of our team and you contribute to us winning, I don’t care where you’re from.
“Westmont always has good character people, and for a while, we didn’t get any Westmont guys. But we want them now.”
Youngerman, Patterson and the rest of the Foresters open pool play of the NBC World Series on Friday at 6:30 p.m. against the Lonestar Kraken
“We’ll be more rested in the tournament than we have been in league play,” Pintard said about his team’s outlook for the World Series. “I think we have a good enough team to win this one.”