Elly De La Cruz

21-Year-Old ShortstopSS
Cincinnati Reds AA
2023 Fantasy Outlook
There are better prospects than De La Cruz, but there might not be a more visually captivating prospect. He looks and moves differently than 99.9% of baseball players. It's as if 6-foot Ronald Acuna and 6-foot-8 Oneil Cruz met in the middle at 6-foot-5. De La Cruz can hit 500-foot homers and post 70-grade run times. He is dripping with athleticism and in no danger of adding too much weight in the coming years to compromise his speed and actions. So why isn't he the No. 1 prospect? Scouts are still torn on the hit tool. He logged a 30.8 K% and 7.8 BB% as a 20-year-old (age appropriate) at High-A and Double-A. The switch-hitting shortstop really struggles with pitch recognition, and if a pitcher doesn't throw him a fastball, the pitcher will probably win the at-bat. Even so, De La Cruz is turning 21 in January, so he could spend the entire 2023 season in the upper levels of the minors and still be on track. If he doesn't improve against offspeed pitches, De La Cruz could be a low-AVG, low-OBP power/speed threat, and the sky is the limit if he is able to make the necessary improvements at the dish. Read Past Outlooks
RANKS
#427
ADP
$Signed a contract with the Reds in July of 2018.
Joins 40-man roster
SSCincinnati Reds  AA
November 15, 2022
De La Cruz was added to the Reds' 40-man roster Tuesday.
ANALYSIS
One of the top prospects in baseball, De La Cruz crushed opposing pitchers in 2022, slashing .306/.361/.586 between High-A and Double-A ball. He still needs to clean up some things on the defensive end and improve his strikeout rate (30.9 K% in Double-A), but that kind of offensive production suggests it will only be a matter of time before De La Cruz gets the call to the majors.
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2022 Fantasy Outlook
De La Cruz is the "it" prospect of the offseason. He is in that alluring stage of his development where the upside and the risk are obvious to all observers. The 6-foot-2 switch-hitting shortstop hit .296/.336/.539 with eight home runs and 10 steals in 61 games as a 19-year-old in the Florida Complex League and at Low-A. He had a 30.2 K% and a 5.3 BB%, which would be a concerning set of plate skills for any prospect at any level. However, evaluators who saw him in person rave about his physical tools (70-grade raw power, 70-grade speed) and the hard-hit and batted-ball data has left remote analysts similarly excited. How he is valued in dynasty leagues comes down to risk tolerance. He might have a wider range of outcomes this season than any other hitting prospect in the game.
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Showing star potential
SSCincinnati Reds  AA
October 13, 2022
De La Cruz finished the 2022 season with a .304/.359/.586 line, 28 home runs, 47 steals (on 53 attempts) and a 40:158 BB:K over 120 games between High-A and Double-A.
ANALYSIS
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Impressive season continues
SSCincinnati Reds  AA
September 6, 2022
De La Cruz is hitting .301/.356/.589 with eight homers and 10 steals through 26 games since his promotion to Double-A Chattanooga.
ANALYSIS
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Opening second half at Double-A
SSCincinnati Reds  AA
July 20, 2022
The Reds promoted Cruz from High-A Dayton to Double-A Chattanooga on Wednesday, Bobby Nightengale of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports.
ANALYSIS
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Soaring in High-A
SSCincinnati Reds  AA
June 22, 2022
De La Cruz has a .303/.353/.584 line with 12 homers and 18 steals over 56 games for High-A Dayton.
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Turning it on in High-A
SSCincinnati Reds  AA
May 18, 2022
De La Cruz has homered in each of his last two games and has a .319/.396/.596 line over his last 12 contests for High-A Dayton.
ANALYSIS
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