Cheap Shot Denies Record-Breaking Rookie Ronald Acuna Chance to Extend Streak
Miami starter Jose Urena sparked a brawl by hitting Acuna with his first pitch.
On Wednesday night, record-breaking rookie Ronald Acuna had a chance to extend his streak of leading off a game with a home run to four games (which hasn’t been done since 1996).
Instead, Miami Marlins starter Jose Urena denied the 20-year-old the chance by plunking him with a 97.5-MPH fastball to start the game at SunTrust Park, leading to a brawl that emptied the benches and the bullpens.
According to ESPN Stats & Information, it was the fastest pitch Urena has ever thrown to start a game.
The first pitch of the night to Ronald Acuña Jr.
Clearly intentional. pic.twitter.com/TlDpUGOdcW
— FOX Sports: Braves (@FOXSportsBraves) August 15, 2018
Obviously upset after Urena’s fastball hit Acuna’s left elbow, Braves manager Brian Snitker had some words for Urena during the melee as well as after Atlanta’s 5-2 win. Both he and Urena were ejected.
“I think it’s pretty evident what I thought,” Snitker said after the game.. “That’s a shame. The young man is just playing the game, doing what he loves to do. A damn shame.”
Acuna initially stayed in the game but left in the second inning. X-rays on the elbow were negative and the results of further tests will be announced today.
“I know that wasn’t the Marlins,” said Atlanta All-Star Freddie Freeman. “That was just Jose Urena. I don’t understand it. Makes no sense. Just because a player is having fun playing the game, swinging the bat incredibly well obviously, that just makes no sense. That was incredibly classless on Jose Urena’s part.”
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