Whatever dimension Ronald Acuña Jr. is from, it is not ours. The Braves outfielder made the slide of the season on Tuesday night.
Sliding into home plate is no easy task.
While catchers are no longer allowed to block the plate, thus giving opposing baserunners an easy path to score, collisions and injuries are a very real risk to any player bolting towards home plate in these uncertain times.
Acuña Jr., who is seemingly putting himself in harm’s way on a daily basis, did so again on Tuesday night. While he surely gave Brian Snitker a heart attack in the process, Acuña added yet another moment to his 2022 highlight reel.
Braves: Brian Snitker’s early-season advice rings hollow
Back in mid-May when Acuña made his comeback in the first place, Snitker warned that he may have to change the way he plays.
“Yeah, because he plays with his hair on fire. He plays the thing hard. He’s done a really good job managing the (comeback from a knee injury), too. He’s gotten hot, he’s on base a lot, he wants to run, making plays in the outfield. Probably as he gets older and matures, he’ll probably need to scale back some of that a little bit because of the wear and tear on his body. At his age, he doesn’t know anything but full speed ahead. But God bless him,” Snitker said, per The Athletic.
Acuña, obviously, did not love being told what to do — especially considering his flare and play-style is what makes him one of the more popular players in the game today, and so valuable to the team.
Plays like the one he made on Tuesday night, in which he bolted towards home without much of a plan in place, go against what Snitker preached.
And while the Braves manager surely has Acuña’s best interests in mind, it’s another example of why slowing a player like the three-time All-Star down is damn near impossible.
Acuña will do what he wants, and he will do so with grace.