NASHVILLE -- The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that they have selected outfielder Brian Barton in the Rule 5 Baseball Draft at the Winter Meetings in Nashville, Tenn. Barton was selected with the 10th pick in the Major League phase of the draft. He was a member of the Cleveland Indians organization.
Barton is a career .317 hitter in 354 career minor-league games beginning in 2005, after he was signed by the Indians as an undrafted free agent out of the University of Miami. He owns a career .417 on-base percentage. The 25-year-old played the majority of last season at Double-A Akron and was promoted late in the season to Triple-A Buffalo. He ranked second in the Eastern League with a .314 batting average and was fifth with a .416 on-base percentage. The 6'3", 187 pound Barton combined to steal 21 bases last season in 31 attempts.
"Barton is a player that has always hit and he can play all three outfield positions," said Cardinals Vice President of Amateur Scouting and Player Development Jeff Luhnow. "He displays a good combination of speed and power and has an excellent work ethic."
Barton is a native of Los Angeles, CA and was named the Indians 5th-best prospect by Baseball America after the 2006 season. In 2006, he led the Carolina League in slugging percentage (.515) and was tops in the Cleveland Player Development System with 144 hits and 88 runs scored.