Cardinals Opt For Owasso's Kozma as Top Pick

The St. Louis Cardinals today selected shortstop Pete Kozma with their first pick, 18th overall in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft. It was the third time in the last seven years that the Cardinals opted for a position player with their top pick.

Kozma, 18, was an All-American at Owasso High School in Owasso, Oklahoma. He finished his senior season with team-bests in batting average (.522), runs (56), RBI (55), and home runs (11). He struck out five times in 113 at-bats, and had 23 walks. Kozma had a three-homer game in the Oklahoma state 6-A playoffs and helped lead the school to a state title as his solo HR was the only run in the 1-0 championship win.

"Pete projects as a solid player who has above average tools for a middle infielder," said Cardinals Vice President of Amateur Scouting and Player Development Jeff Luhnow. "He has tremendous potential and really upgrades our infield depth in the minor league system.

The 6'1", 180-pound Kozma posted a .491 career batting average at Owasso (171-for-348) and scored 154 runs with 140 RBI and 30 HRs. His .553 batting average as a junior was a school record. He has a commitment to attend Wichita State, but the Cardinals are confident that they will sign him and that he'll play for the organization this season.

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