Baseball, MLB, Not Basketball

Is Christian Yelich part-Asian or mixed race?

Christian Yelich is a professional baseball player in the the MLB. He was drafted straight out of high school by the Miami Marlins. The all-star outfielder was elected with the 23rd overall pick in the 2010 Major League Baseball Draft, he spent his first two seasons in the minor leagues.

After playing his first four seasons with the Miami Marlins (and minor league), Yelich was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers prior to the 2018 season. He was traded for Jordan Yamamoto, Lewis Brinson, Monte Harrison, and Isan Díaz. It turned out to be a great career move for Yelich as his fifth season with the Milwaukee Brewers turned out to be his breakout season.

Although Yelich won a Golden Glove Award (2014) and one Silver Slugger Award (2016) with the Marlins, he really performed that first season with the Brewers where he won the 2018 National League batting title with a .326 average, the 2018 National League Hank Aaron Award and  was named MVP of the National League after receiving 29 out of the possible 30 votes.

You’re not here for all that, all you want to know is what Christian Yelich’s race is. Hang tight we’re getting there!

What Nationality is the Name Yelich?

Let’s start with his unique last name – at least unique for Americans. According to, the last name Yelich is an Americanized form of the Serbian and Croatian surname of Jelic. The name can also be derived from the first name of a mother or female ancestor Jela which is the short version of Jelisaveta or Croatian Jelena.

Is Christian Yelich Asian or Mixed Race?

There are times when one looks at Christian Yelich’s facial features and dark hair and wonder offhand whether Yelich is of Asian descent or multi-racial. We’re here to try to answer that questions.

To start, Yelich is definitely multi-racial. His features and lineage are most-impacted by his mother (Alecia) and father (Stephen Yelich Jr.) and since we can’t determine his parent’s ethnic background, we looked at his grandparents’ bloodlines. It’s been reported that Yelich’s paternal grandfather was Serbian while Christian’s maternal grandfather was full Japanese.

Because of his Serbian lineage and last name, Yelich has a strong following among Milwaukee’s small, tight-knit Serbian community. They love cheering for athletes who have a connection, albeit a removed one, to Serbia.

A little more about Yelich’s bloodlines, his maternal great-grandfather was Fred Gehrke, an American football player who is enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. When it comes down to it, though Yelich is a Serbian/Croatian surname, he was born in California and spent his entire life in the United States, so he is of American nationality. On top of his Serbian roots, Yelich boasts a diverse mixed ethnic background that also includes Japanese, Bulgarian, German, English, Danish, Scottish, and Dutch.

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