CINCINNATI — Elly De La Cruz hit a 458-foot drive for his first major league game, and Will Benson achieving a game-ending home run in the ninth inning raised the score Cincinnati Red Devil on Los Angeles 8-6 on Wednesday night and last Dodgers‘ lost the highest four-season streak.
De La Cruz, the 21-year-old tackler who was named by ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel as baseball’s top prospect in his updated rankings last month, hit a ball as fast as 0 -1 word Noah Syndergaard in the first inning. The ball left his club at 114.8 mph and landed in the last row of the right stand at Great American Ball Park for a two-track homer with a score of 2.
A day after making his major league debut, De La Cruz had his second heaviest home game by a player 21 or younger since Statcast began tracking in 2015, just after Toronto blue jay‘ Vladimir Guerrero Jr. at 115.9 mph on August 21, 2020.
“The first thing I thought was that the ball was gone,” De La Cruz said through an interpreter. “I don’t know where it landed. I was looking at my teammates. They told me it had almost left the building.”
De La Cruz played a shortstop a day after finishing third and finished 2-4 at the plate. He tripled on a curved ball in the third inning, a drive that drove into the center-right wall after four jumps. He finished third in 10.83 seconds, the fastest time in the major leagues this season, according to Statcast. That’s the second fastest since the start of the 2020 season, after 10.75 seconds of Arizona Diamondbacks‘ Corbin Carroll last October 3.
TJ Hopkins hit a yard single at number nine, and Benson went home Evan Phillips (1-2), giving Cincinnati its second win in a row and a three-game winning streak. Benson became the third Cincinnati player to make it to the ring for the first time in his career, after Jay Bruce on May 31, 2008 and Drew Stubbs on August 20, 2009.
“Honestly, you can’t dream,” says Benson. “I’ve been trying to get ready. I know my time is coming. I know it. I’ve cleaned it up. You play with raw emotion, play with all you have. When you are successful public, it will overtake you.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.