The St. Louis Cardinals' Pete Kozma: Very different from the Memphis Redbirds' Pete Kozma

Patrick McDermott - Getty Images

The St. Louis Cardinals' NLDS hero, Pete Kozma, is not a lot like the Memphis Redbirds' Pete Kozma, who almost got himself released.

Pete Kozma, the St. Louis Cardinals' starting shortstop, hit .333/.383/.569 in 26 games in 2012. Friday night he hit a game-winning RBI single that won Game 5 of the NLDS vs. the Washington Nationals. Pete Kozma, the Memphis Redbirds' utility infielder, hit .232/.292/.355 in 131 PCL games in 2012. He was almost released a bunch of times, despite the Cardinals' lack of depth at the position.

That's where things stand with the Cardinals' latest postseason hero Saturday morning—no matter what he does, no matter how far the Cardinals go, he'll enter the 2013 season an unlikely starter and a not-certain addition to their roster. His minor league career has been so inauspicious that the Cardinals would rather keep John Gaub and Barret Browning available on their 40-man roster.

His major league career has been so—well, whatever it's been, he just hit the series-winning capper to an impossible comeback in the postseason—so that that you can be sure people who weren't following his awful minor league career could find themselves very surprised when he's in a roster battle come February. It's a weird situation, and it's only going to get weirder.

But right now, needless to say, I'm okay with it.

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