Velazquez named Southern League Player of the Week
Written by Andy Brock Kodak, Tenn. - Tennessee outfielder Nelson Velazquez has been named the Southern League’s Player of the Week, the league announced Monday. After a slow start to his first eight games of the season, Velazquez broke out in a major way as the Smokies (8-6) split a
Written by Andy Brock
Kodak, Tenn. - Tennessee outfielder Nelson Velazquez has been named the Southern League’s Player of the Week, the league announced Monday.
After a slow start to his first eight games of the season, Velazquez broke out in a major way as the Smokies (8-6) split a six-game series with the Rocket City Trash Pandas. Velazquez slashed .455/.520/1.227 in the series. He totaled 10 hits, three doubles, a triple, four home runs and nine RBIs over the Smokies’ second homestand of 2022, good for a 1.747 OPS.
Velazquez struck out 18 times over his first eight games of the season, but he cut that rate down to just four against the Trash Pandas. In two games against the Angels’ No. 5 prospect, left-hander Ky Bush, Velazquez struck out a combined one time.
The Carolina, Puerto Rico, native opened the six-game set by going 4-for-4 with a pair of home runs, two doubles, five RBIs and an intentional walk on Tuesday. Velazquez launched a solo home run the next day and hit his fifth long ball of the year on Saturday.
Velazquez is now tied for first in the Southern League with five home runs and 10 extra base hits and is tied for sixth with 11 RBIs. He is also top-10 in the league in slugging percentage (.667) and OPS (1.006).
For Velazquez, the award is the second of his career, having earned the Smokies most recent Player of the Week honor on 08/15/21 of last season.
Velazquez and the Smokies will begin a six-game road trip with the Chattanooga Lookouts Tonight at 7 p.m. ET.
ABOUT THE TENNESSEE SMOKIES
The Tennessee Smokies are the Double-A affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. Members of the eight-team Southern League, Smokies baseball has been entertaining families and fans of America’s national pastime in the East Tennessee region for over 100 years. To learn more about the Tennessee Smokies, visit www.smokiesbaseball.com.