Prep Baseball Report

Preseason High School Preview: Liberty North

By: Diego Solares
Area Scout, Illinois & Missouri

The Missouri high school baseball season is set to kick off shortly, with ‘Opening Day’ set for March 17th. Over the next two weeks, leading up to opening day, we’ll be publishing our team previews ahead of the 2023 spring season, touching on programs spanning all state classifications.

Perennially, we’ve submitted a Preseason Questionnaire to high school head coaches across the entire state. Their responses have been flooding in and we’re using the detailed insight they’ve provided in our team-by-team preseason analysis.

Our 2023 preseason coverage continues today.

Team: Liberty North
2022 Record: 33-9
Conference: Suburban - Gold
Classification: 6A
Head Coach: Ryan Stegall


Tate McGuire, RHP, 2023, Arkansas signee: One of the state’s top seniors, McGuire will play a similar role this year than he did during the Eagles’ championship run in 2022. He’ll serve as the staff anchor, building off his junior campaign where he struck out 55 batters over 32 ⅓ innings, allowing only four earned runs (0.87 ERA) and walking just seven. When he’s not on the bump, McGuire figures to be a key piece to Liberty North’s offense, and he batted .391 with 12 steals and 24 RBIs last spring. McGuire recently rose up our 2023 rankings after reports of a productive off-season, and the future Razorback enters his final year of high school as an integral part of the Eagles’ title defense:

From 3/3/13: “ sits at No. 4 overall. McGuire, who’s set to take over the reins as staff ace on the reigning 6A state champions and our preseason top Missouri program, has always known how to pitch, throwing all three of his pitches for strikes. Where he’s improved, however, is in the velocity department, as we’ve heard reports McGuire’s fastball has jumped up a few ticks from the low-90s range we saw last summer. At 6-foot-3, McGuire has present size with room to fill out further, and he’s another name that could get plucked in the draft should he hold this into the spring.”

Tate McGuire


1 - The number of teams left standing at the end of the 2022 season after Liberty North defeated Blue Springs South to cap a 33-win season off with a state championship.


Liberty North enters the 2023 campaign as the favorites to repeat as state champions at the 6A level. They’re at the top of our Preseason Top 10 rankings, fourth on our ‘Great Plains’ regional board, and 25th overall in the country, per the official Prep Baseball Report High School rankings. The Eagles will play all season long with a bullseye on their back, but this roster is unquestionably capable of defending their title in emphatic fashion.

This senior class for Liberty North is special, and a large chunk of their core from their championship squad returns for one final year. We highlighted McGuire for his talents above, but two more seniors to note are INF Ty Wisdom (2023; Kansas) and RHP Jackson Downing (2023; Arkansas State). Wisdom is a do-it-all type of producer, returning a .398 batting average with 20 extra-base hits, eight more walks (25) than strikeouts (17) and 11 stolen bases to the heart of this lineup. He’s also an integral bullpen arm for the Eagles, logging 24 ⅔ innings throughout 2022, striking out 32 and pitching to a 0.85 ERA. He’ll continue to do a little bit of everything for the Eagles and his excellence in doing so makes him one of this team’s most valuable assets.

Ty Wisdom

As for Downing, the 6-foot-1, 175-pound senior brings even more talent and experience to this staff. He saw plenty of success as a junior, punching out 46 over 40 frames, winning five games with a sub-2.00 ERA. His strengths showed on the mound at Creekside throughout the summer, as Downing impressed our staff a handful of times, ticking upwards in both stuff and sheer pitchability. His fastball plays anywhere in the mid-to-high-80s with plenty of comfort for three secondaries, including a swing-and-miss breaking ball he’ll throw to any hitter in any count. Aside from what he brings to the mound, Downing will also swing a key right-handed bat for the Eagles, and further deepens a lineup that’s already rich with options. Headed to Arkansas State next fall, Downing is another huge asset in this senior class for Liberty North.

Jackson Downing

OF Jack Lemasters (2023; Washburn University) and LHP Andrew Agnew (2023; Missouri S&T) are two names that both saw time last year and will be relied upon in greater roles this upcoming spring. C Cooper Philbrick (2023; Hutchinson CC), RHP Camden Brashear (2023; Metropolitan CC), and OF Sean Combs (2023; Emporia State) are three more veteran pieces that strengthen this roster even further.

Liberty North is also home of the state’s top-ranked junior in SS Trey Snyder (2024; Tennessee), who’s also slotted within the top-100 on our national class rankings. As a sophomore, Snyder batted .386 over 140 at-bats, totaling 15 extra-base hits with 23 stolen bases and more walks (18) than strikeouts (13). He’s a dynamic multi-sport athlete that, aside from his offense, also brings a stellar glove to the dirt at shortstop. We saw Snyder up close this winter at the MOKAN Preseason All-State and, per usual, the Eagles’ star stole the show:

From 2/17/23: “...has grown and added strength since we’ve seen him last, now boasting a more physical 6-foot-2, 197-pound frame. He’s extremely athletic, posting one of the day’s quickest 10-yard splits (1.65) and 30-yard dash  times (3.84) as well. Snyder’s hand speed (24 mph) and rotational acceleration (27 g) were also high-level metrics, and he took one of the day’s best BP rounds, spraying line drives from a loose right-handed swing. His arm played more lively than we’d seen across the diamond previously, peaking at 94 mph on his best bullet.”

Trey Snyder

One more high-octane prospect on this squad is C Bo Jonas (2024; Oklahoma), who captains this talented pitching staff from behind the dish. Jonas’ glove greatly benefits the Eagles and his comfort with the multitude of power arms they have is surely an asset. His ability to control the run game with advanced arm strength and quick release helps too, all while swinging a strong right-handed bat that’s flashed juice to our scouts in the past.


Defending a state title is arguably more difficult than winning one, but the Eagles return a multitude of key pieces from their championship squad that are now more seasoned and experienced. As a result, Liberty North opens the year as the state’s top team, in our eyes.

Follow along @PBRMissouri for complete coverage of the 2023 high school season.