The red seat.
If you’ve ever been to Fenway Park, you know exactly where it is. If you’ve only ever read about it or seen old videos, you know the tale.
Even at only 17 years old, so does Markus Kirksey, a Canadian-born first baseman and outfielder who is set to play in front of it for the first time as a member of the white team at the upcoming New Balance Baseball Future Stars Series Main Event, set for September 29-October 1.
“Growing up in Toronto, I would always love to watch the Jays play at Fenway Park because it is so historical,” Kirksey said. “When I first learned the red chair in the outfield was for Ted Williams who took a ball 502 feet, I couldn’t stop thinking about it! I was amazed that someone was able to hit a ball that far. Being able to step foot on a field that has seen all-time greats like Williams, Babe Ruth, David Ortiz and Ken Griffey, Jr. is the ultimate dream for me. No words can describe how great a feeling it is for me to get a chance to play there.”
— Mike Ashmore (@mashmore98) July 3, 2023
A member of the Mississauga Tigers, the left-handed hitting Kirksey has been on the radar of the Future Stars Series for quite some time, dating back to a Scout Day two years ago, and continuing with a strong showing at last year’s Underclass Elite in Frisco, Texas as well as this year’s National Combine at Shelby Park in Nashville.
“My experience with (the) Future Stars (Series) has been nothing but amazing,” Kirksey said. “They have seen me develop tremendously over the years and helped me improve on my skills so I could continue to attend events like Underclass Elite and Main Event. Every time I attend an event with Future Stars, it’s always great because I get to talk to the coaches and ask questions that help me improve my swing and overall game. It’s very helpful to get their insight and recommendations. I’m so thankful for the opportunity to attend these showcases and events.
Seemingly always with a smile on his face, the 6-foot-4, 220-pounder has “lots of upside” according to his latest scouting report — one that goes into great detail about his outstanding character — and has been working hard since his appearance in Nashville to continue to stride towards reaching it.
“Since (the) National Combine, I’ve been focusing on being more athletic,” he said. “I’ve worked on running faster, quicker feet, throwing harder and playing more positions to help with my agility like playing outfield. It helps me be more diverse as a baseball player. I have also been working extensively on my hitting, making sure I am able to get on plane with my hips and be able to drive the ball the other way for power. I strive to get better and become more mentally tough with each event. Anything I can improve on, I try to do.
Currently one of the top uncommitted players in the 2024 grad class, Kirksey knows this is an extraordinary opportunity to not only potentially change that, but also show big-league clubs in attendance that he can be a valuable piece in their organizations one day.
“I want the major-league scouts and executives to see my potential to be a pro player one day, and that when you draft me, you are getting a player who will do anything to get to the (big leagues) and be another club (cornerstone) for however long God gives me to play this game,” he said.
- Future Stars Series Regional Combine schedule revealed for 2024 - December 8, 2023
- Main Event moves to Houston for 2024 in returning Signature Events calendar - December 6, 2023
- Inaugural Future Stars Series Showdown set for Globe Life Park - December 5, 2023