Future Stars Series: Anticipation Building Over Upcoming Philly Regional Combine

March 11, 2021

A bevy of familiar faces will be joined by an impressive selection of new talent are set to show their skills with the New Balance Baseball Future Stars Series powered by Program 15 this coming weekend, when the Philadelphia Phillies MLB Urban Youth Academy is slated to host the upcomingRegional Combine in Philadelphia.

Sean Hard (pictured), Orlando Pena, Ryan Kennedy, Tyler Mullen, Ernesto Polanco, Griffin Stieg and Angel Martinez are just some of the previous standouts from major FSS events that are expected to attend this Sunday as the road to return to Fenway Park for this year’s Main Event has already begun.

It’s also a return to the northeast for P15/NBBFSS CEO Jeremy Booth, who spent a good chunk of his lengthy playing and coaching days in this neck of the woods.

“I always love getting back to the area where I spent so much time in my career,” he said. “The staff at the Phillies Urban Youth Academy truly cares about players and it’s an honor on our end to be here in their building.”

Sean Hard, whose brother Kyle, an uncommitted 2023 grad, will also be attending, is perhaps the most experienced of those who will be there when it comes to Future Stars Series events.  He impressed at the National Combine in Lake Charles, and earned an invitation to International Week at Fenway Park, where he struck out four batters in just two innings of work in the first event that year to allow fans into a big league park.

But few have more time at recent major FSS events than Orlando Pena, who has genuinely stood out at the National Combine, International Week and then the World Combine in the Bahamas.  It’s perhaps International Week where he made the biggest impression, smacking four doubles and reaching base six times in ten plate appearances…and that’s certainly not to ignore his home run at the World Combine either.

Ryan Kennedy was mostly featured on the bump at the Underclass Combine, and struck out three batters during his brief outing in Louisiana.  The same can be said for Mullen, who also pitched at the Underclass Combine, recording three K’s along the way in several frames on the mound.

Griffin Stieg was a legitimate two-way standout at the Underclass Combine, not only hitting a memorable homer (shown above), but turned in a standout performance on the mound in which he allowed just one hit despite facing 13 hitters on the day.  Martinez also showed prowess both as a pitcher and hitter at the same event, notably driving in two runs at the plate.

Ernesto Polanco (pictured) had a breakout showing on the blue team at the National Combine; he reached base a whopping ten times in just 13 plate appearances, including showcasing an excellent eye at the plate with five walks.

While the event is set to feature some familiar faces including big college commits like Kennedy (Virginia Tech), Pena (Coastal Carolina), Polanco (Coastal Carolina) and Stieg (Virginia Tech), there will also be some new faces to take a look at for the first time.  Most notably, Missouri commit OF/1B/RHP Carlos Pena and OF/C Cam Jones, Jr., who is set to attend Maryland, will be in the city of brotherly love on Sunday.

Matthew Jackson (Iona), Mason Abromitis (Elon), Michael Edwards (Coppin St.) and Henry Garcia (Southern) are among the others with notable college commitments set to attend, but there’s also plenty of uncommitted talent on the roster to make the day even more intriguing.  Daviel Fernandez, Andrew Holub, Thomas Sheridan as well as returnees like Martinez and Mullen — not to mention seemingly countless others — will give the staff in attendance plenty to look at throughout what should be a fun day in the shadow of the Liberty Bell.

Mike Ashmore
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