BPBC ‘Knocks It Out Of The Park’ In Last Hoorah Before College

Many Americans have similar tee-ball memories from their youth, like picking dandelions in the outfield and going out for ice cream served in little baseball hats. We think back to those days with nostalgia but, by the time many athletes reach high school, it’s not so much ‘America’s pastime’ as it is an opportunity to get noticed by recruiters. For many, if we once again had the chance to step out on the field just to have fun with our friends, we would in a heartbeat.

Incoming Collegiate Freshmen Ryan Kudia and Johny Turgeon, friends who met on the diamond 10+ years ago, realized they had just the chance. This year, they formed their own independent All-Star Team to field one final summer blowout. With support from Best Packaging, Best Packaging Baseball Club and their team, The Machines, were born.

The 18u A-team quickly demonstrated ‘Why we’re the best,’ as we say at Best Packaging, at the Dog Days of Summer Invitational hosted by the Lombard Lightning. In game one, Drew Blouin started strong on the mound and, by the time closing pitcher, Jeremy Fox, took the field, they had a healthy cushion of runs. The Machines’ bullpen was stacked, but these lifelong friends were never selfish about sharing time on the hill. “We may not have had a chance to practice together before the tournament, but we all knew each other so well that we’re already aware of each other’s strengths and weaknesses,” says Ryan Kudia.

When their winning streak continued from the first through the third and final day of the tournament, the words “Who ARE these Best Packaging Machines!?” could be heard in exasperated tones from the opposing bench. As most of their competition represented a specific town like the Chicago Stars or the Schaumburg Flyers, The Machines were quite the unknown newcomers. Like Robinhood and the Golden Arrow, these mystery mavericks swept the competition, earning the title of first place champions. A perfect ending for these sandlot sluggers in their final act as a team.

Ryan, Johnny, and the rest of The Machines will soon be settling into their dorms and taking the first step towards promising careers, but some things are not learned in labs and lecture halls. By effectuating the Best Packaging Baseball Club in every aspect from conception to finally stepping onto the field, these young men have proven they have the interpersonal and organizational skills necessary to achieve real-world success. We could not be more proud of The Machines and we are eager to see what these talented gentlemen do next! Some of these players even earned athletic scholarships, so keep an eye out for the following names in the future of college ball.


Player:                                           Graduated From:                                         Attending:

  • Johnny Turgeon               Lyons Township High School             Illinois State University
  • Damien Sanchez             Lyons Township High School              Valencia College
  • Austin Castle                    Lyons Township High School              University of Cincinnati
  • Ryan Kudia                       Lyons Township High School              University of Alabama
  • Cole Gordon                     Lyons Township High School              Southern Methodist University
  • Wylder Guido                  Nazareth Academy                                University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire (Athletic Scholarship, Baseball, Corner Infield)
  • Ethan Taylor                     Riverside-Brookfield High School     University of Mizzou
  • Jeremy Fox                       Riverside-Brookfield High School     Maryville University (Athletic Scholarship, Baseball, Pitcher)
  • Fabyan Ceballos              J. Sterling Morton High School           Undecided
  • Drew Blouin                      Lyons Township High School             University of Oregon
  • Joe Milano                        Nazareth Academy                               Morton College

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