After seven seasons in the minor leagues, former Ball State center fielder Jeremy Hazelbaker has finally made a Major League roster.

Hazelbaker was a non-roster invitee to the St. Louis Cardinals camp in Jupiter, Fla., and after injuries to starting shortstop Jhonny Peralta and infielder Ruben Tejada opened up roster spots, he was named on the Opening Day roster.

Hazelbaker 2009 Ball State stats (* denotes Cardinal record)

  • .429 batting average
  • .550 on-base percentage*
  • 77 runs scored*
  • 87 hits
  • 17 doubles
  • 8 triples*
  • 9 home runs
  • 38 RBIs
  • 48 walks*
  • 29 steals

In 2009, Hazelbaker was selected in the fourth round of the MLB Draft by the Boston Red Sox after a standout junior season at Ball State. He led the Mid-American Conference with a .429 batting average, .550 on-base percentage, 77 runs, 87 hits, eight triples and 48 walks. He also racked up 29 steals, the third-best total in the MAC.

He also tied the single-season Ball State record for triples and broke the records for runs scored, walks and on-base percentage.

That year, the American Baseball Coaches Association named Hazelbaker second-team All-America and Baseball America listed him as third-team. He also earned first-team All-MAC honors.

In his three-year career at Ball State, Hazelbaker hit .316 with a .419 OBP and a .509 slugging percentage.

Hazelbaker has played 751 minor league games in seven years, hitting .264 with 239 career steals. Last season, he split time among AA Tulsa (Los Angeles Dodgers), AA Springfield (St. Louis) and AAA Memphis (St. Louis), and hit .313 with 25 doubles, 13 home runs and 24 stolen bases in 112 games.

This spring, he led St. Louis with three home runs, was second on the roster with four steals and hit .304 with a .373 OBP and a .543 slugging percentage.