Oscar Taveras

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Carlos Martinez will wear No. 18 to honor Oscar Taveras


This had been rumored for a while, but now it’s apparently official

Martinez was longtime friends with the deceased Cardinals outfielder and pleaded with Taveras to come stay with him at a VIP resort the night before Oscar and his girlfriend died in a car crash. Martinez had been wearing No. 44, which manager Mike Matheny could now take. He gave his No. 22 to Jason Heyward.

Cardinals GM John Mozeliak issues statement on report that Oscar Taveras was drunk

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Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak has issued a statement on the recent report out of the Dominican Republic that outfield prospect Oscar Taveras was heavily-intoxicated during his fatal car crash …

“We have seen the media reports regarding Oscar Taveras that have come out this afternoon, but have yet to receive any official notification from the Dominican.  Until we have the opportunity to review the official report, we cannot confirm details.  While we are still working to obtain the facts, it won’t change the fact that this is a terrible tragedy.  We have an obligation to use this as an opportunity to educate our players that they must take responsibility for themselves both on and off the field.”

Oscar and his 18-year-old girlfriend died October 26 when Taveras’ car smashed into a tree in the Dominican.

Oscar Taveras was drunk during fatal car crash

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Sad update from Dionisio Soldevila of the Associated Press

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (AP) — Dominican officials say St. Louis Cardinals rookie outfielder Oscar Taveras was drunk at the time of his fatal car crash last month.

Tessie Sanchez, a spokeswoman for the attorney general’s office in the Dominican Republic, told The Associated Press on Wednesday that toxicology reports showed Taveras had a blood-alcohol level five times the legal limit when he lost control of his car Oct. 26 on a highway in Puerto Plata.

In the aftermath of the crash we were reminded about the poor road conditions in the Dominican and heard many calls for change. That’s still a worthy cause, but the culprit in this case was Taveras’ decision to drive his vehicle while under heavy influence of alcohol. His girlfriend, 18-year-old Edilia Arvelo, also perished on that October night. A horrible shame.

Royals’ Game 6 starter Yordano Ventura is dedicating his outing to Oscar Taveras

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Yordano Ventura became good friends with Oscar Taveras while the two were playing in the Double-A Texas League and they had made plans to spend time together this winter in their native country, the Dominican Republic. “But I guess not,” Ventura said solemnly to Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com on Monday afternoon. “God had a different plan.”

Ventura is starting for the Royals in Game 6 of the World Series on Tuesday night against the Giants and will dedicate the outing to Taveras, who died in a car crash Sunday alongside his girlfriend Edilia Arvelo. More from MLB.com

Scrawled on his spikes and on his glove will be the No. 18 and the initials “R.I.P.” in memory of countryman Oscar Taveras, the 22-year-old Cardinals outfielder who died in a car accident in the Dominican Republic on Sunday.

“It’s going to be hard to put that aside,” Ventura said in Spanish on the eve of the most important start of his life, “but I’m going to throw everything I have out there. I’m dedicating that game to him.”

Two banks of lights in right field at Busch Stadium have been left on Tuesday night in memory of Oscar.

The lights are on in right field tonight at Busch Stadium in memory of Oscar Taveras

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From the local FOX affiliate in St. Louis …

And here’s a beautifully-framed look at the tribute from the Cardinals’ Twitter account …

Taveras was supposed to compete for the Cardinals’ starting right field job next spring.

He died alongside his girlfriend Edilia Arvelo in a car crash Sunday in the Dominican Republic.