Future Stars Series Brings Together Top High School Talent
The third annual Future Stars Series kicks off this weekend in Boston, an event that brings together some of the top talent in the United States and around the world.
The 2019 edition of the event, which is put on by New Balance Baseball and Program 15, will take place at Fenway Park and pits 25 of the top high school players in the United State against 25 prep players from Australia, the Bahamas, Canada, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Japan, Mexico, Puerto Rico and Venezuela.
“The idea was never to make it just domestic,” said Jeremy Booth, the CEO of the Future Star Series and Program 15. “Because it’s a global game . . . it’s such a big part of baseball.”
The Future Stars Series began by trying to help professional players with their development and evolved into an event that attempts to bridge the gap with amateur players to help them realize their full potential.
“We just want to help players develop and advance,” Booth said. “Whether that’s personally, whether that’s professionally, as far as on the field or off the field. We started out with player development with pro guys first, then went into it with amateurs and figuring out which data made sense to use and which didn’t. Figuring out what had correlations where, so we could quiet a lot of that noise that people were looking at and really help them focus on stuff that was going to advance them. All with the eye of building people into roles that have value.”
Like many events and organizations in the high school baseball industry in 2019, the emphasis at the Future Stars Series is being placed fully on player development. A three-day event that takes place from Friday, Sept. 20 to Sunday, Sept. 22, players will go through the typical routine that includes batting practice, defensive work and several games.
But players will also get access to more information about their own game and ways they can improve it moving forward, including traditional scouting reports that will be written on each player as well as data that comes from more progressive technologies.
“We do stuff like Motus testing,” Booth said. "And that’s not necessarily the sleeves, that’s the Motus One. That’s like your athletic understanding, and it’s all the player’s information. It’s all them. We’re not taking that and flipping it to anybody. Are you tight in your groin? How are your hamstrings working? Things that allow them to understand themselves as an athlete. And then there’s an action plan that comes from that.
“We do stuff with vision testing. Visual Edge is a part of this. That will be able to give them, not just the evaluation, which they’ve already had at some point this year, but more of a progress report as well as a development action plan to go forward as well to sharpen their eyes. Your eyes are tied to so much. And one of the best things about working with Visual Edge is being able to understand the profiles of what plays center field? What kind of vision is in center? What kind of vision is at second base? How does that translate? Because that helps build a role and helps get the most out of a player as well. So we’re able to give them that feedback.
“So these three days are about seeing where you stand. This is where you were six months ago or three months ago or a month ago. This is how far we can get you, and this is the next piece to do that.”
The Future Stars Series is also supported by an advisory board that includes 25 different members of major league clubs, including scouting directors, pro scouts, amateur scouts, international scouts and coaches at various levels who lend their expertise to the selection and development of the players.
Fourteen players from the inaugural Future Stars Series event in 2017 went on to be drafted the following year in 2018, including first-round picks Bo Naylor and Grayson Rodriguez. The field looks strong again this year and includes four top-20 players in the 2020 high school class, including righthander Mick Abel, outfielders Dylan Crews, Zac Veen and Petey Halpin.
Outfielder Braylon Bishop is also shaping up to be one of the top prospects in the 2021 class.
“I’m excited for the kids to walk away better than they got here,” Booth said. “And I’m excited for them to continue to blaze a trail for the ones who come behind them. I think there was a point in this game where we got away from what is best for the player.
“You can’t lose sight of the fact that they are kids and they are families and there are going to be far more things that these guys go do after their playing career than just being on the field. And we’ve all lived that. . . . We want to make sure we are leaving these guys better than they found it, and that’s what I’m most excited for.”
Below you can find the complete rosters for the National and World Teams.
- Nate Clow, SS
- Michael Brooks, IF
- Zac Veen, OF
- Tommy Troy, SS
- Kyle Russell, SS
- Koen Moreno, RHP
- Mac Guscette, C
- Nick Griffin, LHP
- Ricky Tiedemann, LHP
- Hayden Durke, RHP
- Mick Abel, RHP
- Petey Halpin, OF
- Jake DeLeo, OF
- Ian Moller, C/3B
- Wyatt Tucker, RHP
- Marco Raya, RHP
- Justin Lange, RHP/OF
- Markevian Hence, RHP
- Josh Pearson, 1B/3B
- Dylan Crews, OF
- Nate Wohlgemuth, RHP
- Jackson Nezuh, RHP
- Brandon Clarke, LHP
- Bryce Behmer, C
- Braylon Bishop, OF
- Jessiel Garcia, OF (Puerto Rico)
- Kristin Munroe, SS (Bahamas)
- Irvin Escobar, C (Puerto Rico)
- Fernando Zambrano, RHP (Mexico)
- Mario Gomez, C (Mexico)
- Ismael De Jesus, SS (Colombia)
- Yuta Tsuboi, RHP/OF (Japan)
- Sabin Ceballos, 3B (Puerto Rico)
- Joseph Gonzalez, RHP (Puerto Rico)
- Luis Hernandez, C (Puerto Rico)
- Jack Seward, RHP (Canada)
- Abnel Cera, OF (Dominican Republic)
- Cody Rodwell, OF/1B (Australia)
- Luis Valdez, LHP (Mexico)
- Daniel De La Cruz, RHP (Dominican Republic)
- David Calabrese, OF (Canada)
- Ricardo Estrada, LHP (Mexico)
- Alexander Ayala Jr., LHP (Panama)
- Jose Izarra, SS (Venezuela)
- Roque Salinas, OF/1B (Mexico)
- Cristian Pimentel, RHP (Dominican Republic)
- Shota Yamada, RHP (Japan)
- Angel Salas, OF (Dominican Republic)
- Megumi Fukuda, RHP (Japan)
- Peter Vazquez, SS (Puerto Rico)