The Atlanta Braves were getting a bargain with Ronald Acuna Jr. The outfielder is one of the best in the business and he will now be paid accordingly.
News broke earlier today indicating that Acuna Jr. and the Braves have agreed to a new contract extension. The extension is an eight-year deal through 2026 worth $100 million. There are club options for the 2027 and 2028 seasons.
Acuna would have hit arbitration in 2021, but now Acuna won’t reach free agency until he’s 31-years-old.
According to FanGraphs, Acuna’s depth chart projections have him beside the likes of J.D. Martinez, Javier Baez, Joey Votto, and Matt Carpenter.
What is interesting is that Acuna will be locked in and until his early 30’s, meaning he may miss out on some money along the way. With how he debuted onto the MLB playing field, many believed he could get some serious money come free agency.
The native of Venezuela made his debut almost a year ago at 20 years old. In his debut against the Cincinnati Reds, he finished the day with a hit.
He finished 2018 with 111 games played, 127 hits, 64 RBI and 26 Home Runs. He was also awarded the 2018 NL Rookie of the Year.
Acuna is a versatile outfielder. The young stud can play any outfield position. He primarily played LF last season (101 games) but also spent time in center field and right field.
As for the Atlanta Braves, in 2018 they finished first in the NL East with a 90-72 record. They were dropped in the Division Series, however.
In four games this season, Acuna and the Braves are 1-3. In 2019, Acuna has 1 home run and 2 RBI, with 1 stolen base. He has 3 hits on the year as well.
While many believe that Acuna Jr. could have received more money in Free Agency down the line, it’s important to think that this deal is life changing for Acuna.
He signed with the Braves at 16-years-old for just $100,000. At the end of his contract and when he finally hits free agency, many believe that his current deal will be an absolute steal.
It may be a steal, but it’s life changing for Acuna.