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Taveras, Wong injured in Cards' win

Hot-hitting prospects forced to exit victory over Arkansas
May 6, 2012
Kolten Wong and Oscar Taveras continued their strong starts to the season Sunday, but the Cardinals may be forced to take their hot bats out of the lineup for a few days.

Wong collected two more hits at the top of the lineup and Taveras slugged a three-run homer and reached base three times in Double-A Springfield's 10-7 win over Arkansas. But both top prospects suffered injuries that could leave the team shorthanded for the rest of its homestand.

Wong, St. Louis' No. 6 prospect, rolled his left ankle trying to beat out an infield hit in the fifth inning. Taveras, the Cards' No. 3 prospect, bruised his right knee in a collision with second baseman Jose Garcia in the eighth.

Both players left the game and received treatment in the clubhouse. The severity of the injuries is not known, although the Springfield News-Leader reported Wong does not expect to miss too much time.

The afternoon started well for both players, with Wong -- a 2011 first-round pick -- opening the game with a single, going first-to-third on Jermaine Curtis' base hit and scoring on Taveras' eighth homer. The longball matched the 19-year-old outfielder's tally from last season and gave him the Texas League lead with 27 RBIs.

Wong grounded out in the third and singled up the middle in the fourth. An inning later, chopped a ball to second baseman Renny Osuna and landed awkwardly while trying to beat out a hit. He was replaced by Garcia, who ended up playing a role in Taveras' injury.

After walking in the second and flying out in the sixth, Taveras collided with Garcia in shallow right field as the two tried to track down Adam Heether's double.

Garcia told the newspaper that Taveras' knee made contact with his leg. Taveras was able to walk off the field, while Garcia remained in the game.

Taveras is batting .325 with a league-leading 20 extra-base hits in 29 games, while Wong is hitting .325 with 22 runs scored in 27 contests.

Ashley Marshall is a contributor to