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Elly De La Cruz does without an interpreter and holds the Reds’ entire press conference in English for the first time

Reds infielder Elly De La Cruz typically uses an interpreter in his interactions with the media, but on Wednesday he completed his entire media session without an interpreter and spoke entirely in English for the first time.

The young Reds star explained that it was important for him to speak for himself so that the media and fans could truly understand him.

“It’s important for the fans to understand me and [for] Me [to] I understand the fans,” he said. “I’ve been working on my English a lot to talk to you and I think I’m doing well.”

De La Cruz, 22, who previously said in February that he wanted to speak to the media in Englishsaid Wednesday he practiced by talking to his teammates in Cincinnati.

“I just started with them and then gave up,” De La Cruz said. “I like talking to the Americans because it gives me confidence. I do not need [translator Jorge Merlos] more.”


Elly De La Cruz
Elly De La Cruz did not use an interpreter during his media session on Wednesday. Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

De La Cruz added that Merlos was a great help to him with his English.

Reds manager David Bell told reporters he was impressed by “the courage it takes for De La Cruz” to put himself out there.

“He is incredibly considerate. “He’s humble, the way he listens and learns,” Bell said.

The switch-hitting infielder is coming off a rookie season in which he batted .235 with a .710 OPS while recording 13 home runs, 44 RBI, 67 runs and 35 stolen bases.


Cincinnati Reds third baseman Elly De La Cruz (44) walks behind the batting practice net during the final preseason practice before Opening Day at Great American Ball Park in downtown Cincinnati on Wednesday, March 27, 2024.
Cincinnati Reds third baseman Elly De La Cruz (44) walks behind the batting practice net during the final preseason practice before opening day at Great American Ball Park in downtown Cincinnati on Wednesday, March 27, 2024. Sam Greene/The Enquirer/USA TODAY NETWORK

In his first few months, he took the league by storm, recording one cycle and stealing three bases in one inning.

De La Cruz told reporters last week through an interpreter that he was looking forward to the new season.

“I feel really good,” De La Cruz said. according to MLB.com. “Of course there will be some days when the results will not be as good as we would like. But I feel ready for the season.”

The Reds open the 2024 season on Thursday against the Nationals.

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