Ontario 12 Days of Christmas: Futures Team



By Chris Kemlo and PBR Staff
PBR Ontario Scouting Director

Interested in attending a PBR Ontario event? Check out our schedule by clicking here.

12 Days of Christmas Rundown:
Day 1: A Week In Florida
Day 2: Top Stats of the Year
Day 3: CPBL to Debut in 2016
Day 4: A Look Back at TPG
Day 5: A Look Back at Early Commitments
Day 6: OBJ Success
Day 7: Midget Elite League

Ontario 12 Days of Christmas: Futures Team

With this being PBR Ontario’s first year in existence, it gave us an amazing opportunity to put together a team of 2017 and 2018 grads to compete in the ever popular and heavily scouted PBR Future Games over the three days in Indianapolis.

For myself, I have not been in one place where the number of college and pro scouts exceeded the number 100, and Indy put that number to shame.

The only other time I would say it was close was when Brady Aiken made his first and last appearance in 2015 in Bradenton Florida. Every major baseball conference and school was represented in Indianapolis. North Carolina, Vanderbilt, Tulane, Cincinnati, Michigan, Clemson, Virginia, Oklahoma, Kentucky, the list goes on and on.

For these young prospects from Ontario to have an opportunity like this does not come around very often and I know the players were grateful they had this chance.

Needless to say, (and most Canadian teams can account to this) we were thought of as the underdogs. Know one flat out said it, but we are known for our hockey, 11 month winters and igloo housing (I swear I've heard all the above). Our talent and depth was deep from top to bottom on our roster, showcasing athleticism, power, defense and pitching, we could a little bit of everything.

No matter what schedule you were handed in this three game weekend, you knew you were in tough against a state's best prospects.

The first matchup on the schedule was prospect team from New England.

We were able to put together quality at-bats, move players on the bases and manufacture enough runs to come out victorious 4-2. Tyler Whalen set the tone and was efficient in his three innings of work, and the bullpen of Spencer Marcus and Trevor Lethbridge closed out the victory. Dondrae Bremner and Isaac Deveaux led the offense and it was a nice feeling to see this young group of prospects get off to a solid start.

Game two saw us take on a very strong team full of top prospects from Michigan. Michigan jumped out to an early lead on some timely hitting and patience at the plate. We were able to claw our way back into the game with a big two out triple by infielder Thomas Grilli put us within one run. Unfortunately that was as close as we came and the final was 7-5 in favor of our friends from Michigan.

Game three saw us take on Minnesota/Iowa in the finale of this incredible weekend in Indianapolis. Although the score was not in favor for us, it didn’t take away from individual performances from our arms. Top 2018 prospect Ben Abram, right-hander Garner Spoljaric, and big righty Bryce Davis all showed well on the bump and will be prospects that colleges will want to keep an eye on as they continue to develop and mature.

While our record was 1-2 on the weekend, that was the furthest thing from my mind heading into the unknown of what turned out to be a tremendous event. This group of young men should feel proud of what they accomplished, how they handled themselves on and off the field, and set the bar as the first Canadians to compete in the PBR Future Games.

It was an honor and a privilege to compete and coach this group, and I am already looking forward to the crop of young men who will represent PBR Ontario at this years event from August 4-6 back at the beautiful Grand Park complex in Indianapolis.