After winning MVP, Acuña plays ball in Venezuela -- and homers!

November 17th, 2023

Baseball season never ends for  

On Thursday, the Braves’ superstar was named the unanimous winner of the 2023 National League MVP Award. And what was he doing when the big news was announced? Getting ready to play in a baseball game, of course.

While other MVP candidates may have been relaxing at home, soaking up the offseason, Acuña was preparing to make his season debut in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League for the Tiburones de La Guaira. Their scheduled game was even delayed by an hour so that one of Venezuela’s favorite sons could celebrate his first NL MVP Award with friends, family and teammates.

Once the hugs and high-fives were done, Acuña turned on his game face and headed out to right field for the Tiburones.

He led off the bottom of the first and, as might you expect from the player who led the Majors in hits (217) and runs (149) this year, he singled to center field before coming around to score.

In the sixth inning, Acuña brought everyone to their feet with a two-run homer to right.

Acuña just completed one of the most stupendous seasons in baseball history, highlighted by his 41 home runs and 73 stolen bases. But before his unprecedented year, he played 10 games for the Tiburones last winter, batting .441 with an 1.160 OPS.

Maybe his playing time in Venezuela this winter will lead him to even greater heights in 2024, if that’s possible.