wagner lead

Mustangs infielder Jack Wagner throws during practice on Thursday at Phil Welch Stadium.

First-year Mustangs infielder Jack Wagner’s path to St. Joseph sounds a little bit like a game of telephone.

Manager Johnny Coy’s ties to Wichita growing up helped lead to the recruitment of Kansas State catcher Jordan Maxson, now a veteran of the team. Wagner’s long-standing relationship with Maxson led him path to joining the team.

The result of this string of events has been extremely positive so far. The Kansas Jayhawks product currently leads the Mustangs in RBI’s as well as home runs.

Wagner described his introduction to the team.

“Me and Jordan have been friends for a long time, he was my neighbor my whole life. He played here last summer and said he had a blast, so I was like ‘All right, I’ve gotta try it,’” Wagner said.

“I was confused during the first game, there was three thousand people here and I’ve never seen that many people for a summer game. It’s been a really great experience so far, and I’m looking forward to the rest of the summer.”

Coy remarked on Wagner as a player, a teammate, and a prospect.

“He can play anywhere on the infield, can be anywhere in the lineup and just produce. He’s a guy who played a lot for the Jayhawks in the second half of the year. Plus, he brings a nice swagger on the field that I like us to have. He reminds me of myself when I played,” Coy said. “I’d heard his name when he was in high school, I knew he was going to do great things at Kansas and I knew he was going to be able to come here and play great baseball.”

Childhood friend and current roommate Jordan Maxson gave his expert opinion on Wagner’s approach to baseball.

“He’s pretty athletic and pretty good, he does what he does every day,” Maxson said. “He has a ton of confidence, he’s never showing up like he doesn’t have it. He either fakes it until he makes it, or just actually has that confidence.”

Perhaps Wagner’s most notable accomplishment so far was his dominance during the Joplin series earlier this month. Wagner hit a home run and multiple base hits in all three game’s of the team’s sweep of the Outlaws. In just three games, Wagner had compiled 10 RBI.

He has no plans to slow down, with a specific goal in mind.

“I felt really good throughout that whole series, was seeing the ball really well. I hope I can keep it up, because I’m coming for Johnny (Coy)’s home run record.”

Levi Smith can be reached at levi.smith@newspressnow.com. Follow him on Twitter: @SJNPsports.