Braves star Ronald Acuña Jr. projected to lead league in stolen bases again

All eyes are on Ronald as he looks to build off of a truly historic campaign.

Chicago Cubs v Atlanta Braves
Chicago Cubs v Atlanta Braves / Matthew Grimes Jr./Atlanta Braves/GettyImages

As we inch closer and closer to the start of another incredible baseball season, all eyes are on Braves star Ronald Acuña Jr. and how he builds off of a truly historic campaign. In case you were under a rock for the 2023 season, the generational talent put together a year that involved him slashing .337/.416/.596. You would think that would be wildly impressive, however outside of batting average, these are all numbers he has, or has almost replicated the rest of his career - a feat of its own.

What truly set last year apart from the rest was his overall health and milestone numbers. His 41 home runs and 73 stolen bases were something no one in the history of the sport has replicated before and as a result, the eyes of the baseball world are on Ronald and what he will do this season.

Braves star Ronald Acuña Jr. looks to continue historic stretch of baseball

The team over at Major League Baseball released their projected stolen base leaders for 2024 and it's no surprise who sits a top the list.

I don't think anyone in their right mind would project another 70+ stolen base campaign unless it was for someone like Rickey Henderson, but the 56 projected total is a decrease of 19 from 2023 - a rather substantial decrease. I'm nitpicking of course, because he's still projected to lead the league by 10, after leading the league by an absurd 19 over Corbin Carroll who came in second with 54.

The league talked about potential additional rule changes regarding blocking bases but those talks were tabled, although one distinction was made, and here's what MLB's Anthony Castrovince had to say about it:

"Fielders may continue to block the base while in possession of the ball and while in the act of receiving the ball. The latter exception has historically been interpreted to mean all defensive activity with the ball headed in the fielder’s direction."

Anthony Castovince

It has now been made clear that unless the fielder is in the act of fielding a ball, standing in front of the bag is obstruction and the runner will be granted the base. All that being said - will Ronald lead the league again? Will he set another record with this new rule clarification? What will Ronald do to make our hearts skip a beat this season? Tune in for the next episode of Major League Baseball (RIP Akira Toriyama🙏🏾).

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