From BR Bullpen
Ronald Jose Acuña Blanco
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 0", Weight 215 lb.
Ron Acuña played for 12 years in the minor leagues and has been with the Venezuelan national team. He was known for his speed and outfield arm primarily.
Acuña debuted in 1996 with the DSL Mets, hitting .239. He batted .284 for Guacara 2 in the 1997 Venezuelan Summer League, then .325 in the 1998 VSL. He was 4th in the league in average, tied for the triple lead (3) and led in RBI 938).
In 1999, Ron came stateside, playing for the GCL Mets (5 for 20), Kingsport Mets (.284/.369/.374, 15 SB in 20 attempts in 38 G) and the Pittsfield Mets (.225/.309/.268). In 2000, he hit .307/.334/.366 for Kingsport with 31 steals in 41 tries and was briefly with the Capital City Bombers (.179/.200/.231 in 13 G). He made five double plays, tying for the lead among New York-Penn League outfielders and his 14 assists were two off the pace. He made the NYPL All-Star team in the outfield alongside Mitch Jones, Ryan Church and Nate Janowicz.
Acuña played for the 2001 Bombers (.285/.332/.394, 23 SB, 8 CS) and the St. Lucie Mets (.244/.283/.370). In 2002, Ron batted .298/.365/.375 with 36 stolen bases (in 48 attempts) for St. Lucie and .208/.250/.438 in 10 games for the Binghamton Mets. He led Florida State League outfielders with 16 assists and he finished 8th in the league in batting average. He would spend his next four years at AA but never advance to AAA.
The Valencia native hit .304/.350/.388 for the 2003 Binghamton squad and scored 70 runs. He stole 24 bases but was also thrown out running 12 times. He gunned down an amazing 21 runners from the outfield, leading the Eastern League, and he was .008 shy of the top 10 in batting average. He was one assist shy of leading all outfielders in the affiliated minors.
Acuña stayed with Binghamton in 2004, producing at a .300/.333/.376 rate with 22 steals in 34 tries. His assist total fell all the way to 7. He was .001 from making the EL's top 10 in average that year. Ron joined the New Hampshire Fisher Cats in 2005 and fell to .245/.296/.330. In 2006, he was with the Huntsville Stars, batting .268/.318/.335; his speed going, he only stole 3 bases in 9 tries. He still had a cannon arm, though, with 19 assists to tie two other players for the lead in the Southern League. He made no errors, leading SL outfielders in fielding percentage.
Ron played 8 games for the 2007 Long Island Ducks to end his US playing career.
Acuña starred in the 2007 Pan American Games, going 7 for 13 with 4 doubles, 2 walks and 2 runs as Venezuela's top offensive performer. He went 3 for 5 against the vaunted Cuban national team, which won Gold. He is back with Venezuela for the 2009 Baseball World Cup.