Ronald Acuña hit another leadoff home run on Saturday
It feels like Acuña’s been around for a decade, yet he’s only 22 years of age. On Saturday night, he hit a leadoff home run to give the Braves an early lead over the Washington Nationals. As the Braves look to extend their NL East advantage, Acuña is setting personal benchmarks of his own, as he set Atlanta’s franchise record for leadoff bombs with 18. Yes, he almost has as many leadoff home runs as years on this Earth.
The 22-year-old has spent some time on the injured list this season, but the Braves outfield depth is extensive enough for his absence not to be noticed as much as it should.
Acuña is already among a handful of the greatest stars of baseball’s next generation
Acuña and Fernando Tatis, Jr. are good bets to remain among a select few transcendent stars MLB is banking on to carry the game through to the next generation. Mark Bowman of MLB.com put Acuña’s early success in perspective, and yes, it’s more impressive than you think.
Per Bowman, “Felipe Alou had set the record (17) while batting first for the Braves 633 times from 1964-69. Acuña trumped that total in just his 210th game as a leadoff hitter.”
Acuña’s talent isn’t being wasted on a perennial playoff team in Atlanta, but one would hope the Braves can make it past the NLDS for the first time in some while as to expose him to a greater market. His talent with a World Series or pennant on the line not only reveals him to that kind of pressure, but doesn’t limit his potential to the greater-Atlanta area. Let’s get it done.