Cardinals outfielder Oscar Taveras has died in a car accident in Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic, Dionisio Soldevila of ESPNDeportes confirms (via Twitter). Taveras’ girlfriend, 18-year-old Edilia Arvelo, also reportedly passed away. A variety of outlets from the Dominican Republic had reported news of the accident. Taveras was 22 years old. Soldevila notes that the police report indicates that Taveras’ car had veered off the road.
“I … will forever remember him as a wonderful young man who was a gifted athlete with an infectious love for life,” said Cardinals GM John Mozeliak, via the Los Angeles Times’ Bill Shaikin (also on Twitter).
“Oscar was an amazing talent with a bright future who was taken from us well before his time,” added Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr., via FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi.
“All throughout baseball are in mourning this evening,” said Bud Selig in a statement. “With heavy hearts, tonight we play Game Five of the 2014 World Series in memory of these two young people. On behalf of Major League Baseball, I extend my deepest condolences to the families and friends of both individuals, as well as to Oscar’s teammates and the entire Cardinals organization.”
Taveras signed with the Cardinals in 2008 and, within a few years, became one of the top young talents in the game. He had just begun his career in the big leagues, playing in 80 games with the Cardinals this season. Among his career highlights was a dramatic home run in Game 2 of this year’s NLCS against the Giants. Most prospect evaluators considered Taveras to have superstar potential.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.