On Sunday, the first day of expanded rosters, the St. Louis Cardinals activated Tony Cruz from the 15-day disabled list. The reserve catcher had been on the DL since August 15 with a stress fracture in his left forearm.
The right-handed hitter has not yet been cleared to swing a bat, but could conceivably serve as a third, emergency catcher behind Yadier Molina and Rob Johnson until he is fully ready to go.
Cruz, 27, has appeared in 40 games this season, batting .212 with one home run and 11 RBI, and carries a .375 mark (9-for-24) with runners in scoring position.
Became a Cardinal
Selected in the 26th round (802nd overall) of the June 2007 First-Year Player Draft.
Became the major league backup catcher in May when Gerald Laird broke his finger. Made an enough of an impact in St. Louis (.262 BA in 38 games and solid defense) to be considered the favorite to return in 2012.
Added to the 40-man roster on November 19, 2010. Had spent the majority of the season with Palm Beach where he hit .282 with 16 doubles while driving in 25 in 46 games. Hit .289 with 10 doubles and six home runs in 40 games with Springfield. His 18-game hitting streak with the S-Cards tied the franchise record.
Cruz played in 110 games for the Double-A Springfield Cardinals, posting a .220/.281/.366 line. He hit ten home runs and drove in 48.
Cruz' 2008 season come to an end because of a hand injury in July. Prior to his injury, Cruz was hitting .279 with eight home runs and 58 RBIs for the Palm Beach Cardinals. At the end of the season, Cruz played in what can be considered a rehab assignment, the Hawaii Winter League for the Honolulu Sharks.
The Cardinal Nation/Scout.com Top Prospect 2012: #16
The Cardinal Nation/Scout.com Top Cardinals Prospect 2011: #16
Florida State League mid-season All-Star: 2010
Florida State League mid-season All-Star: 2008
Previously drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 42nd round of the 2005 draft, but did not sign.