WeissCrax: Scoring on Ladies Night

Ladies Night

These lucky ladies were raffle winners at a recent Santa Barbara Foresters game. (Randy Weiss Photos)

Scratch ‘crashing ladies night’ off The Bucket List …

Done as of last Saturday … and, oh, what a night!!

In fact, in the middle of all these great tunes blasting away – golden oldies like Pretty Woman – THE most amazing thing happened (… hey, do your best Rodney Dangerfield imitation here …) a baseball game broke out!!

WHOA!!

Yes – Ladies Night at UCSB’s cozy Caesar Uyesaka Stadium – home of the two-time Wooorld Champs … your Santa Barbara Foresters!!

Tonight is the second game of a three-game home stand with the San Luis Blues and a tough battle for first place here on the coast in the California Collegiate League (CCL).

First place is very familiar territory to the Foresters — quite honestly, it’s the only place they really live — a la 15 league championships in 18 years with “America’s most successful summer ball coach and SB baseball legend” – that being, of course, the-one-and-only, Bill Pintard.

Bill Pintard

Foresters manager Bill Pintard graciously responds to a photo request.

His Forester teams were crowned NBC World Series National Champs in 2006 and 2008 … and they’re looking to do it again this year.

Among the many individual tributes and accolades for the ever-humble Pintard – ‘CCL Manager of the Year Award’ (nine times, so far) and even closer to home – induction into the prestigious Santa Barbara Athletic Roundtable Hall of Fame, just last month.

“And, perhaps, nothing means more to him than Hugs for Cubs – helping cancer kids and their families through baseball,” sez Dave Hall, SB Foresters Board President.

It’s the Forester’s MVP community program started by Pintard’s son, Eric in 1995, then a Forester pitcher. Sadly, he later died of rare form of spinal cancer in 2004 at the too-young age of 31.

Eric’s number 19 has been retired by the Foresters and Dad Bill proudly wears it on his uniform as a forever tribute to his son.

“Many Forester alums now playing in the major leagues also wear 19 for the same reason,” adds Hall.

Back to the game …

We’re sitting high above on the Santa Barbara Ramada Inn Sundeck next to my good bud, Drew “The Voice” Wakefield – he is the Foresters’ longtime PA Announcer.

Perfect job for him.

If you know Drew – you know why.

Immediately over our left shoulder(s) is Presidio Sports co-founder and esteemed sports colleague, Blake Dorfman — he’s in the real press box calling the action for local radio.

Hospitality king Drew Wakefield acts as the Foresters' PA announcer. 'The Voice' helps to identify a nightly "Beer Batter" and hand out fun prizes between innings.

AND THIS JUST IN …

The sun finally makes a cameo appearance … the foothill views are spectacular … jets take off and land nearby at Santa Barbara Airport with its soon-to-open brand new terminal … and we’ve got the best looking crowd of this young season!!

A season that started with the Foresters hot, hot, hot — a sizzling 9-0 launch, before hitting a little speed bump along the way – dropping two in a row.

The first to the Conejo Oaks by a score of 4-2 and then the SLO Blues, 10-4 on Friday night.

Time to start a new winning streak – all 542 fans here hope.

But first, folks – our National Anthem sung with the b-b-beautiful voice belonging to UCSB co-ed and Forester fan, Maegan Cruise, who really should be on one of those singing reality shows … she’s certainly got talent!

Shortly after the song’s dramatic finish … and the hooome of the brrrave … the Blues waste no time getting on the scoreboard – pushing across a runner in their first at bat – and they lead 3-0 for half the game.

Presidio Sports co-founder Blake Dorfman is the on-air voice of the Foresters.

In between innings, “The Voice” is working his magic – recognizing sponsors in the crowd and giving away raffle items left and right.

He puts me to work as his chief assistant. The pay is not-so-good (translation: nada) but there are incredible benefits handing the many fun prizes to all the lucky female winners – tho a little tricky with the gentle breeze pushing the winning tickets all over the place.

The Forester bats finally come alive in the fifth and they tie it with three bunts, a hit batter and a sacrifice fly. The fans come alive too!

The team turns it on with another three runs in the sixth inning, en route to an 8-4 victory.

The Foresters beat the Blues again on Sunday Fathers Day, 7-0, and then the Orange County Pioneers last night, 7-5 … and are on a new roll!

And about that winning streak to start the season, Coach Pintard puts it all in perspective in a style all his own …

“You gotta hang loose. It’s not how you start; it’s how you finish, buddy.”

Can’t wait ‘til Saturday – yes, Ladies Night again!!

Ain’t no better place for catching some action …

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