5 reasons why Elly De La Cruz won't make the Reds Opening Day roster
By Drew Koch
Everyone throughout Reds Country is excited about Elly De La Cruz. And why not? The Cincinnati Reds top prospect is electrifying and nearly every baseball expert predicts that De La Cruz will become a star.
De La Cruz is probably the most exciting young player to come up through the Reds farm system since Jay Bruce. De La Cruz has the potential to be a five-tool player at the next level.
But, De La Cruz is far from a finished product. While an overwhelming majority of the Cincinnati faithful would love to see the shortstop prospect on the Reds Opening Day roster, it's not going to happen. Let's look at five reasons why Elly De La Cruz will not be part of the 26-man roster that breaks camp.
1. Reds prospect Elly De La Cruz has not played above Double-A.
First, let's look at the most obvious reason that Elly De La Cruz will not be part of the Cincinnati Reds Opening Day roster. De La Cruz, while wildly talented, is still very inexperienced. The 21-year-old has yet to even make it to Triple-A.
Yes, it's true that not every major league player needs to climb the minor league ladder the same way. Heck, Reds fans saw Jonathan India promoted to Cincinnati's 2021 Opening Day roster and win NL Rookie of the Year without setting foot in Triple-A. But that's more the exception than the rule.
While Double-A has become a bit more of a proving ground of sorts in recent years, the top pitchers in the minor leagues still reside in Triple-A. It's oftentimes where pitchers who are on the cusp of the big leagues go until they're called upon due to injury or they're finally deemed "ready for The Show".
Elly De La Cruz, while dominant at Double-A last season, could still use at least a few more months in the minors before making the jump. Look for the Cincinnati Reds to send De La Cruz to Triple-A to begin the season, and don't be shocked if he actually starts the 2023 season back at Double-A Chattanooga.