For those us who obsessively follow the Braves farm system (like me), getting the opportunity to watch Ronald Acuña Jr.’s first ABs this season was awesome. And it’s not as if he was simply going up there to get his timing right. No, Acuña was out there performing his best, and as a result, he had an incredible rehab assignment with Triple-A Gwinnett, slashing .368/.520/.421 with a pair of doubles and three stolen bases in six minor league games – good for a 165 wRC+ during his short stint down on the farm. And thankfully, RAJ is coming back to Atlanta sooner than originally expected, as Thursday’s news came with plenty of excitement.
That’s right, folks. Our star outfielder is back, as RAJ replaces outfielder Alex Dickerson on the roster. Dickerson – whew boy, the man was practically an automatic-out out there, despite many of us being rather excited when he was picked up this past offseason. In 13 games with the Braves, A Dick hit just .121 with one XBH.
Given how well Acuña looked out there on the field with the Stripers, I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s immediately inserted into the outfield, starting in right field for the Braves in its game versus the Cubs on Thursday night. Although, there’s also a realistic scenario in which the team gives RAJ a game or two to gather himself, allowing him to DH in this Chicago series. Who knows. But regardless, that MVP-like bat is back in the Braves lineup, and that’s really all that matters. Let’s hope the man stays healthy, because at three games under .500, Atlanta’s offense certainly needs a boost.