Thoughts and prayers to Ronald Acuna, Jr. after this bean ball. He’s been the most exciting player in baseball over the last two weeks with no sign of slowing down until Jose Urena decided to be a complete idiot today. Here’s the full video; I’ll see ya after.
The first time I watched the pitch, I gave Urena the benfit of the doubt… “Ehh, maybe he didn’t have a good feel for the ball yet and the first pitch just slipped.
Nope. The slow motion replay makes this such an obvious intentional HBP. The ball started inside and tailed further up and in as it got to the plate. Complete bush league move, especially considering 1-Acuna is the best player in the game right now. He’s got eight home runs in his last eight games, including homers in each of his last five games and leadoff homers in his last three (apparently the streaks continue on because his HBP isn’t an at-bat). Absolutely bonkers numbers. And 2-Urena plays for the Marlins. There’s no reason a starting pitcher on a team that’s 48-75 — literally trying to lose as many games as possible the entire year for a high draft pick — needs to throw at someone. Urena is a nobody pitcher on a nobody team. If this were the Phillies, who are tied with the Braves in the NL East, with Jake Arrieta on the mound and he threw one high and tight to set the tone and make Acuna uncomfortable to start the game, that might be a different story. But Jose Urena? Come on, man.
After looking up the update on Acuna (at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday night), it looks like the initial X-rays were negative with a CT scan’s results still pending until Thursday. So it looks like he won’t miss much time as long as the bruise heals normally and there’s no lingering issues. I’m guessing we’ll see Acuna back in the box before we see Urena toe the rubber again. Hopefully this ordeal won’t effect his approach at the plate or the results of his at-bats lately.
One last point… It took way too long for the Braves to get on the field and defend their guy. The kid is 20 years old and the most important piece in their organization — get out there and let the world know they won’t have this happen.