Ronald Acuna (minors02)
Ronald Jose Acuna Blanco
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 0", Weight 180 lb.
Outfielder Ronald Acuna was the winner of the 2017 USA Today Minor League Player of the Year Award. the son of minor league player Ron Acuna, he was signed by the Atlanta Braves before the 2015 season as a 17-year-old by scout Rolando Petit, who had first spotted him before he had turned 15.
He made his debut by splitting his first season between the GCL Braves and Danville Braves, hitting a combined .269/.380/.438 in 55 games. In 2016, he played two games in the Gulf Coast League and 40 with the Rome Braves of the South Atlantic League, his season being shortened by an injury. When he did play, he continued to shine, with a batting line of .312/.392/.429. In 2017, he played at three levels, starting in Class A with the Florida Fire Frogs of the Florida State League, where he hit .287 in 28 games. Promoted to the AA Mississippi Braves, he hit .326 in 57 games, then he finished the year in AAA with the Gwinnett Braves, after being promoted on July 13th. There he hit a home run in his second at-bat and finished at .344 in 54 games, his batting average having improved at every level. Overall, in 139 games, his batting line was .325/.374/.522, with 13 doubles, 8 triples and 21 home runs. He scored 88 runs and drove in 82 while stealing 44 bases. He was named to play in the 2017 Futures Game, then after the season was distinguished by USA Today and Baseball America as the minor league player of the year. He was also named #2 on the top 100 prospects list compiled by mlb.com in February 2018. The only player, ahead of him, Shohei Ohtani, was not really a true prospect, having already played a number of seasons in Nippon Pro Baseball, so it could be argued that Acuna was in fact #1.
- 2017 Baseball America Minor League Player of the Year, Florida Fire Frogs Florida State League, Mississippi Braves Southern League and Gwinnett Braves International League
- William Boor: "Acuna feeds off family, flourishes in Fall League", mlb.com November 17, 2017. 
- Mark Bowman: "High ranking meaningful to prospect Acuna: Outfielder proud to represent Braves on new Top 100 list", mlb.com, January 28, 2018. 
- Mark Bowman: "If Acuna excels, Braves could accelerate path: All eyes will be on Atlanta's top prospect at Spring Training", mlb.com, February 8, 2018. 
- Kyle Glaser: "2017 Minor League Player Of The Year: Ronald Acuna", Baseball America, September 8, 2017. 
- Ray Glier: "Minor League Player of the Year: Braves prospect Ronald Acuna improves at every level", USA Today Sports, September 6, 2017.