October 1, 2023

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Eli de la Cruz called up the Reds

Eli de la Cruz called up the Reds

Eli de la Cruz called up the Reds

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11 minutes ago

Shortstop Elly De La Cruz is one of the most anticipated prospects in baseball, and the Reds fans’ wait to see him play in the big leagues is now over.

A No. 1 prospect in Cincinnati and a No. 4 prospect overall, according to MLB Pipeline, 21-year-old De La Cruz was called up Tuesday from Triple-A Louisville, to start at third base and clean at bat for the first time. De La Cruz would become the first Reds player to make a cleanup in his MLB debut since Frankie Keeler in 1942. He is also the youngest Major League player to debut a cleanup since Andres Mora (20 years, 324 days) did so for a team Orioles in 1976.

Since returning from injury, De La Cruz has routinely been a standout marvel for Louisville with his five-tool talent. He made contact for the most hit ball in all of professional baseball this year, with an exit speed of 118.8 mph recorded by Statcast. Overall in the same game, he hit three balls at over 116 miles per hour.

In early May, De La Cruz was playing third base for Louisville when he made a 99.2 mph throw to first baseā€”the hardest pitch on record at the time in Triple-A or the major leagues.

On June 2, De La Cruz connected with a 10.97-second home plate rush to third base for the fastest home run to third at the major league level in 2023.

De La Cruz will likely play mostly for the Reds but may also see time at third base. Another prospect, De La Cruz’s former Louisville teammate Matt McLain, has been playing for Cincinnati since his May 15 promotion. McLean often played second base for Louisville when De la Cruz was at shortstop. If the Reds operate in a similar fashion, they will likely move second baseman Jonathan India to third base. India has been taking the balls lately at number three.

Now De La Cruz will test his abilities at baseball’s highest level, and his games are expected to be a showpiece for Cincinnati – and beyond.