While the MU recruiting class of 2010-11 is dominated by pitchers, there are a handful of newcomers on the offensive side that promise to bring some leadership and production to the team.
■ Jeff Lusardi, OF had been with the Tigers for a year now, but was forced to sit out the past season after transferring from Arizona State (originally from Blue Springs South HS in MO). Lusardi played in the Cape Cod League this summer, with the Hyannis Harbor Hawks, where he no doubt gained valuable experience playing against top-notch competition. In 80 at-bats he posted a .226 average (detailed stats). Lusardi comes in with the age and veteran status of a JuCo transfer, yet is a known quantity to the team. He will compete with several other candidates for the starting outfield positions.
■ Dillon Everett, SS (Horizon, AZ) has future leader written all over him, both on the field and off the field. Everything I hear about him paints a picture of a solid and steady young man, a good asset to have on a young team.
■ Drew Carlile, C (Poudre HS, Fort Collins, CO) was a late sign, just a month before the school year began. He hit .451 in 2010 and, like Everett, comes with off-the-field bona fides as a scholar and leader. Considering the starting catching job is probably up in the air after the departure of Nicholas, Carlile will add some pressure into that battle.
■ I've also heard from Danny Murphy, 2B/SS (Mehlville HS, StL), who is enrolling at Mizzou and plans to make a run at the roster as a walk-on. He sports some decent 2010 stats, which should help him in the steep uphill climb to crack a roster that is already well over the playing season limit.