Ronald Acuña is a Venezuelan born professional baseball player who made his debut in Major League Baseball (MLB) in 2018, playing as an outfielder for the Atlanta Braves. The young Venezuelan has come a long way with the Braves. He signed a $100,000 contract with the franchise in 2014 as an international free agent and has played in quite a handful of minor leagues before he was eventually promoted to the major league in April 2018.
And he made the record as the youngest player to appear in a Major League game in the 2018 season surpassing teammate Ozzie Albies – who is currently the only other player born in 1997 (Jan. 7).
Here are other fascinating and thrilling facts about the young and promising player.
Ronald was born on December 18, 1997, as Ronald José Acuña Blanco Jr. to Leonelis Blanco and Ronald Acuña. He comes from a family of baseball players so it wouldn’t be out of place to say the game runs in his blood.
As a young man, his grandfather Romualdo Blanco played in the Minors. The right-handed pitcher posted a 4.58 ERA in six Minor League seasons. Acuña’s father Ronald Acuna Sr was so good in the game that he stole 30-plus bases in three seasons, hit .282 over eight years and was also a Mets prospect.
His uncle Jose Escobar is a former MLB shortstop and right-handed batter who played for the Cleveland Indians in the early 1990s. His cousins are not also left out in the game that runs in their lineage. Alcides Escobar is one of his cousins and plays shortstop for the Kansas City Royals. His other cousins in the game include former big league hurler Edwin Escobar, Kelvi.m Escobar (former Angels and Blue Jays pitcher), and Vicente Campos, who reached the Majors in 2016 and is currently in the Angels farm system.
To collect the list, Ronald Acuña’s younger brother Luisangel Acuna is also a baseball player, who missed the MLB Pipeline’s Top 30 International Prospects list but he is eligible to sign with a Major League club when the international signing period begins.
Ronald began his career playing in the minor leagues after being signed on by Atlanta Braves as an international free agent in July 2014. His debut appearance was in 2015 and with the Gulf Coast Braves, later that season, he got promoted to Danville Braves – where he batted .269 with four home runs, 18 RBIs, and 16 stolen bases in 55 games.
The next season, he moved to the Australian Baseball League, playing for the Melbourne Aces, he was soon named an ABL All-Star. In 2017, he made his debut appearances in Grapefruit League games. Acuña also played for the Florida Fire Frogs of the Class A-Advanced Florida State League, Mississippi Braves of the Class AA Southern League, Gwinnett Braves of the Class AAA International League, Peoria Javelinas, an Arizona Fall League – he played a total of 23 games in the AFL, he hit .325/.414/.639, with seven home runs and emerged as the winner of the league championship, claiming league MVP honors, he also became AFL’s youngest most valuable player that season.
In 2017, the Venezuelan player batted .325 with 21 homers, 82 RBIs and 44 stolen bases in three minor league levels in the Braves’ system. He was the only prospect in baseball at the time with grades of 60 or higher across all five tools – hitting 60, running 70, arm 60, power 65, and fielding 60.
In 2018, the Venezuelan was ranked by Baseball America as the No. 1 Major League Baseball prospect for the season, he also made it to MLB.com’s list, Ronald was ranked second to Japanese two-way player Shohei Ohtani. In April 2018, he was promoted to the major league and became the youngest player in the MLB.
Acuña made his Major League debut on April 25, 2018, in a match against the Cincinnati Reds, and recorded his first career hit off Kevin Shackelford. His first major league home run off came the following day in another match against the Reds and this time the home run was off of Homer Bailey.
Ronald Acuña’s Career Stats
|Year||Team||GP||AB||R||H||RBI||BB||SO HR AVG|
|2018||Braves||29||117||19||31||13||10||37 5 .265|
|Career Total||29||117||19||31||13||10||37 5 .265|
Height And Body Measurements
The player who is nicknamed El Abusador by Starling Marte stands at 1.83 m (6 feet), weighing 82 kg. Information about his other body measurements are not available online.