Braves: Brian Snitker praises Ronald Acuña’s maturity

MLB: JUL 01 Marlins at Braves

The Braves are on pace to challenge Major League Baseball’s team home run record for a single season, set by the Twins in 2019, who hit 307 balls over the fence. They have the National League leader in home runs in Matt Olson, while Ozzie Albies and Ronald Acuña aren’t too far behind. It would make sense for the Braves to have at least one participant in the home run derby this weekend. However, everybody on the team seems to be focused on a much bigger goal.

Matt Olson was approached by Major League Baseball to do the home run derby, but he declined. He likes where his swing is at going into the All-Star break and doesn’t want to risk anything messing that up. Acuña was also asked to participate, but he also said no, which Brian Snitker believes is a sign of maturity.

Outsiders may wonder how Acuña made such a jump from 2022 to 2023. Health is the primary factor, but this is also a better version of Ronald Acuña Jr. than we’ve ever seen before, and his maturity deserves a lot of recognition.

Acuña is beginning to grasp the game at a much high level. He understands how opposing pitchers are trying to attack him and taking what they give, which is why we’ve seen his strikeout rate nearly cut in half. Acuña’s also beginning to understand what it is needed to win and how to go about business at this level. He’s always been the Braves most talented player; now, he’s a leader in the clubhouse. It’s all coming together for the Braves superstar right fielder, which is why he’s established himself as the clear-cut best player in the National League.

Photo: David J. Griffin/Icon Sportswire

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