The Cardinals debut of Oscar Taveras, 10 years later

A look back at the excitement of the debut of Oscar Taveras, the tragic ending to his young life, and the dominoes that have fallen since May 31st, 2014.
San Francisco Giants v St. Louis Cardinals
San Francisco Giants v St. Louis Cardinals / Dilip Vishwanat/GettyImages
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October 26th, 2014: The shocking news

Then, as quickly and as bright as he had made his start to his MLB career, it was done. On October 26th, 2014, at around 8 pm CST, reports started coming in during the ongoing World Series game that Oscar Taveras and his girlfriend, Edilia Arvelo, had died in an automobile accident in Puerto Plata, DR.

Personally, it was heartbreaking. I sat up with my mouth agape and not really believing the news. I waited as more and more reports came in. All the same. It was odd as a 22-year-old to stare at the computer or TV screen and see another 22-year-old, gone. That was reality though. The reality became even more dark and bold as it became known that Oscar Taveras's blood alcohol level was 0.287, more than 5 times the legal limit at the time of death.

"I remember watching the World Series when it was reported, and just being in absolute shock, so much to the point that I called my dad and brother. We were all so invested in the team. It really felt like losing a family member. I remember losing Darryl Kile and how much of a gut punch that was. I was only 12 when that happened. Same feelings came back when Taveras passed." -Taylor Streiff Redbird Rants

The feeling was the same Taylor, it was like losing a family member. This was the 3rd that I had lost to drunk driving and the 2nd for the Cardinals in short of a decade with the loss of Josh Hancock in 2007.

One player of note is RHP Carlos Martinez. Martinez and Taveras had been friends since childhood. Martinez was already a player that wore his emotions on his sleeve and the passing of his friend Oscar was very hard on him. He later changed his number to honor his late friend and cited carrying his memory on the field with him for every start after.