Peoria Chiefs Lose a Pair of Contributors

The Cardinals' Midwest League club has to replace a hitter and a pitcher after Wednesday injuries.

Though the Peoria Chiefs had worked 12 innings and almost six hours had transpired before they broke their five-game losing skid with a 2-1 victory over the Burlington Bees on Wednesday night, it was not all good news.

On Thursday, the Midwest League club placed two players from that game on the seven-day disabled list – Gerwuins Velazco and Michael Holback.

Normally a catcher, Velazco had been penciled into the lineup at first base. It was his first start there since August 2011. With prospect catchers Steve Bean and Carson Kelly ahead of him and having just come off the DL last Wednesday, May 21, it was only Velazco's third game of the 2014 season.

The 22-year-old right-handed hitter left Thursday's game in the seventh inning with a hamstring injury. Velazco had singled and took second on the throw, but had to leave immediately for a pinch runner. In his short, but successful stint as an active Chief, the Venezuelan native had six hits in 10 at-bats, including a double and home run.

Holback was the Chiefs starting pitcher on Wednesday, but exited after just four innings. The 21-year-old right-hander gave up one run on three hits, walked one, and struck out two. The nature of his injury is a tight forearm.

In his three Midwest League starts since joining the Chiefs from extended spring training camp on May 15, Holback logged a 4.15 ERA on six earned runs in 13 innings. He fanned 13 and walked five. MWL hitters batted .222 against him.

As of yet, the Chiefs have not been provided replacement players. That should change on Friday and of course, we will have all the details here at The Cardinal Nation.

To see the Cardinals' entire system by level and position, check out the Roster Matrix at The Cardinal Nation blog.

Brian Walton can be reached via email at Also catch his Cardinals commentary daily at The Cardinal Nation blog. Follow Brian on Twitter.

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