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Oscar Taveras homers in first major league game for Cardinals

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Outfield phenom Oscar Taveras made a splash in his debut for the Cardinals, hitting a home run against the visiting Giants before a massive rainstorm overtook the field and delayed the game.

Dilip Vishwanat

The much hyped debut of St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Oscar Taveras lived up to its billing, as the 21-year old hit a home run in his first game as a major leaguer. The home run was hit off of the San Francisco Giants' Yusmeiro Petit -- filling in for an injured Matt Cain -- in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Adding a bit of intrigue to the home run, the tarp was rolled out almost immediately afterward as a massive storm hit the field. Given that it was in the bottom of the fifth and it made the game 1-0, if the game hadn't continued, the Taveras home run would have been considered a walk-off. But the game did resume, so he had to settle for a historic home run for the Cardinals organization. How historic, you ask?

Taveras, rated a top-four prospect in all of baseball by most major scouting outfits this year, had worked through an ankle injury and what Cardinals GM John Mozeliak characterized as difficulties coming back from the injury mentally to make it to the majors this season. That was mostly done through his work in the minors, where he hit .325 with seven homers as part of the Cardinals AAA affiliate in Memphis. Those numbers, following a rough spring training, had Mozeliak pretty excited before the game, at least based on what he said to Alex Halsted of "There's definitely a high level of anticipation and excitement," Mozeliak said. "When you take the time and you invest heavily in the international market, you're looking to someday maybe get a return like this. I think everybody involved in that is A, proud, and B, excited, to see what he can do at the major league level."

Even if the home run didn't win them the game, Mozeliak has to be excited for what he's seen Taveras do already "at the major league level."