Cards 2010 Arizona Fall League Recap: Hitters

Among St. Louis Cardinals farmhands, Tony Cruz and Adron Chambers fared especially well in the AFL.

With the conclusion of the 2010 Arizona Fall League, it is time to look back at the performances of the St. Louis Cardinals prospects that participated. The AFL typically consists of top Triple-A and Double-A players from across the game and has the reputation of being a hitters' league.

All Cardinals with Zack Cox, Chambers and Pete Kozma
We will start with the Cardinals position players. As opposed to recent years in which Cardinals hitters did not fare particularly well against this advanced level of competition, 2010 offered several standout performances.

The four position players participating were catcher Tony Cruz, shortstop Pete Kozma, third baseman Zack Cox and outfielder Adron Chambers. All four received considerable playing time, between 65 and 76 at-bats each.

Across the six AFL squads, 69 players qualified to place among the league leaders, having received at least two at-bats per scheduled game. That group includes the four Cardinals. As such, their ranking (Rk) among the 69 in four categories is included on the right of the two tables that follow.

Rk Rk Rk Rk
Cruz 19 76 13 26 3 0 3 17 7 14 0 T45 T13 11 T47
Chambers 18 66 13 22 5 0 1 10 5 14 10 T27 T38 T45 2
Cox 18 65 8 17 4 1 2 14 8 21 0 T34 T23 T22 T47
Kozma 17 67 13 18 7 2 0 4 6 18 1 T16 T53 T65 T34

Rk Rk Rk Rk
Tony Cruz 2 0.342 0.393 0.500 0.893 11 20 18 18
Adron Chambers 3 0.333 0.377 0.455 0.831 16 29 33 31
Zack Cox 3 0.262 0.333 0.446 0.779 50 47 36 41
Pete Kozma 5 0.269 0.329 0.433 0.762 41 48 40 44

Tony Cruz – In a league with some very polished hitters, the catcher ranked in the top 13 in the league in home runs, RBI and batting average and in the top 20 in on-base, slugging and OPS. Cruz, who also played some first base, drove on 17 runs in 19 games, batted .342 and slugged .893. Clearly his stock is rising.

Adron Chambers – With ten stolen bases, the speedy outfielder ranked second in the entire AFL. His .333 average was 16th and his other slash stats all placed him in the top half of the league. His OPS of .831 was 31st. Like Cruz, Chambers proved he was worthy of being added to the Cardinals 40-man roster.

Zack Cox – The Cardinals took a calculated risk by sending their 2010 first-round pick to the AFL after just a handful of Gulf Coast League at-bats. The 21-year-old started very slowly, but improved as he went along, with a .324 average and a .993 OPS over his last ten games. Overall, his 14 RBI in 18 games tied for 22nd in the league.

Pete Kozma – His seven doubles placed him in a tie for 16th among the AFL hitters. While Kozma's overall numbers were not overwhelming, his average, slugging and OPS was superior to three of the organization's 2009 AFL participants, Bryan Anderson, Daniel Descalso and Daryl Jones. Kozma tied fellow shortstop Cale Iorg for second-most errors on the Surprise Rafters with five. He also joined those on the Cardinals' 40-man roster following the AFL.

The next report will look at the four Cardinals pitchers that competed in the 2010 AFL. Click here if you missed the earlier series of nine interviews from the league, including all eight players and hitting coach Derrick May.

Brian Walton can be reached via email at Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Selected TCN content appears at Follow Brian on Twitter.

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