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Cards sign first-round pick
ST. LOUIS -- The St. Louis Cardinals signed third baseman Zack Cox, their first-round draft pick, to a $3.2 million, four-year contract.
Second-round pick Jordan Swagerty, a right-handed pitcher from Arizona State, also agreed to terms late Monday night.
Cox, the 25th overall selection, will report to Class A Gulf Coast. Swagerty, the 75th player taken in the June draft, will begin his career at Class A Batavia.
The 21-year-old Cox, of Louisville, Ky., set University of Arkansas records with a .429 batting average and 102 hits last season. He had nine home runs, 48 RBIs and 14 doubles in 59 games. The 6-foot, 215-pound sophomore was the Razorbacks' starting third baseman both seasons in college and was 5 for 11 with two doubles in the Tempe, Ariz., Super Regional against Arizona State in June.
He receives a $2 million signing bonus, payable in $400,000 installments Oct. 31 and Dec. 15 of this year, and Dec. 15 in 2011, 2012 and 2013.
He gets a $200,000 salary this year, which will not be prorated. In 2011, he receives $200,000 if in the minors and the minimum if in the majors. His salary rises to $350,000 in the minors in 2012 or the major league minimum.
In 2013, he gets $450,000 in the minors and the higher of $450,000 or the minimum in the majors.
Swagerty was a finalist for the 2010 Stopper of the Year given to the top Division I reliever. The 6-1, 170-pound sophomore had a 2.19 ERA with 48 strikeouts in 37 innings and set a school record with 14 saves.
Swagerty, of Sachse, Texas, also caught periodically and batted .352.