No. 2 prospect Ronald Acuña is bringing all five tools to the Major Leagues
The 2018 season has already given us one dazzling debut from baseball's top prospect, and now the man right behind him on the list gets his turn. Batten down the hatches, because the Braves have announced that 20-year-old phenom Ronald Acuña Jr. will make his debut on Wednesday night against the Reds.
You may have heard of Acuña before, whether it was his MVP performance at last year's Arizona Fall League or that time he batted a cool .432 during Spring Training. But you might not appreciate just how good Acuña is -- he's a true five-tool prospect, capable of doing just about everything well on the diamond. (Don't take our word for it: MLB Pipeline didn't give him a single grade below a 60 on the 20-to-80 scouting scale.)
So, to help adequately prepare you for his coming, let's go to the tape and marvel at all the things Acuña will bring to SunTrust Park.
Tool 1: Speed
Acuña's bat grabs the headlines, but his speed might be his single best skill, drawing a 70 on the 20-to-80 scouting scale from MLB Pipeline. What does that mean in practical terms? It means he can make stealing second and third look easy -- against a lefty, no less:
And it means he can go home-to-third in a cool 11 seconds:
Tool 2: Power
Lest you think he's some slap-happy speedster, though, make no mistake: Acuña can mash. He hit 21 homers in 139 games across three levels of the Minors last season, including nine in 54 games at Triple-A -- and again, he was just 19 years old. Here he is clearing the berm in left field:
And here he is taking
Tool 3: Hitting
And it's not like Acuña has to sell out for that power, either. He's a career .305 hitter in the Minors, and with bat control and plate coverage like this, you can see why he can turn any pitch into a base hit:
Tool 4: Fielding
He can hit for average and power, he's proven himself at every level of the Minors, and he won't be old enough to buy a beer until December -- oh, and did we mention he can play center field? He can play center field:
Tool 5: Throw
Of course, should you already have a solid starting center field -- like, say, Atlanta's
This should be fun.