Latin American sport continues to amaze the world. We cannot talk about Venezuelan baseball without mentioning Luis Peñalver. This time we are talking about new blood. I will tell you about one of the youngest and most successful Venezuelans in the world of sports. “The abuser,” as he is nicknamed on his MLB team. At his young age of 22, he breaks records and writes a splendid story in the most famous sport in the United States without going through the Venezuelan League LVBP .
Ronald José Acuña was born on December 18, ’97, in La Guaira, Venezuela. Ronald’s talent was visible from a very young age. Venezuela was witness to the birth of a crack that was going to explode in the MLB.
When age does not affect quality.
Venezuelan “El Abusador” Ronald Acuña Jr., the spectacular center fielder for the Atlanta Braves, became the second youngest player in history to hit 40 home runs in the same season. The home run of approximately 132 meters, immortalized him and helped his team beat the Philadelphia Phillies 5-4. Legend Mel Ott , who was 20 when he hit 42 home runs for the San Francisco Giants in 1940, is the only other youngest player to surpass Acuña Jr. in his feat. One more star of Latin American sports.
Time goes fast.
In July 2014, Acuña signed with the Atlanta Braves for $ 100,000 as an international free agent. Un año más tarde hizo su debut profesional en 2015 con los Gulf Coast Braves y más tarde fue promovido a los Danville Braves. En total fueron 55 partidos los que disputo Acuña entre los dos equipos. En 2016, recortó .312 / .392 / .429 con cuatro jonrones y 19 carreras impulsadas en solo 42 juegos combinados entre los Gulf Coast Braves y Rome Braves debido a una lesión. Terminada la temporada, jugó para los Melbourne Aces de la Australian Baseball League y fue nombrado ABL All-Star.
A future All-Star.
He started 2017 with the Florida State League A-Advanced class Florida Fire Frogs and was later promoted to the Southern League Double A Mississippi Braves.Acuña was included in the All-Star Futures Game roster in July, and played the entire game, one of only three World Team members to do so.
The Gwinnett Braves of the Triple-A Class International League were uniformed immediately after the All-Star break,Made his International League debut against the Charlotte Knights, during which he hit an opposite-field home run in his second at-bat.For the year, Acuña appeared in 139 games, hitting .325 / .374 / .522 with 21 home runs, 82 RBIs and 44 stolen bases.
MLB’s top elite prospects.
After the 2017 minor league regular season ended, Acuña was invited to join MLB’s premier elite prospect completion school, the Arizona Fall League and was assigned to the Peoria Javelinas. He played 23 games in the AFL hitting .325 / .414 / .639 along with 7 home runs, winning the league championship and earning the league MVP title, becoming the youngest most valuable player in the AFL.
The Latin American baseball player made his MLB debut in 2018 as a member of the Atlanta Braves . Acuña won the 2018 National League Rookie of the Year Award, played the playoffs , hit a grand slam (a 3-3-on-base homer) against the Dodges and began writing his MLB history. In 2019 Acuña was close to 40-40 and played the playoffs again.