Elly De La Cruz provides another highlight in Cincinnati Reds' loss to St. Louis Cardinals

Elly De La Cruz shakes hands with Cardinals catcher Willson Contreras before his first at-bat Friday.
Elly De La Cruz shakes hands with Cardinals catcher Willson Contreras before his first at-bat Friday.

ST. LOUIS — The Cincinnati Reds didn’t do much in their series opener Friday night against the St. Louis Cardinals until a late rally that fell short.

But that doesn’t mean rookie phenom Elly De La Cruz didn’t do something worth watching for the fourth game in as many days in the major leagues.

Because of course he did.

After striking out three times against left-hander Jordan Montgomery in a 7-4 loss in the first game of a nine-game road trip, De La Cruz — turned around and hitting from the left side — hit a ball so hard (98 mph) into the ground a few feet in front of the plate against right-hander Chris Stratton that it bounced high in the air all the way to the shortstop, who was forced to hold it as De La Cruz sped across first base.

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It was a key moment in the Reds’ two-run rally in the eighth.

And also gave the new kid a four-game hitting streak to start his career.

But neither De La Cruz nor the Reds made much noise up until then.

In fact, the man who caused so much buzz, ruckus and electricity at Great American Ball Park the past few days was so quiet on this night a few of the “best fans in baseball” could be heard chanting “over-rated” at the top prospect in baseball.

What was conspicuously not quiet Friday night?

The bats belonging to the last-place Cardinals against Reds starter Ben Lively — in particular, those of Nolan Arenado, Jordan Walker and Nolan Gorman, who hit a combined quarter-mile worth of homers.

Each hit was a two-run homer, in the first, second and seventh innings, respectively.

This article originally appeared on Cincinnati Enquirer: Cincinnati Reds' Elly De La Cruz offers one of few highlights in loss