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Where Ronald Acuña Jr. ranks among the Braves’ all-time greats

Ronald Acuña Jr. has just six seasons in the majors, but is already making his mark in the Braves’ record books

Division Series - Philadelphia Phillies v Atlanta Braves - Game Two Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Ronald Acuña Jr.’s 2023 season was one of the best offensive performances in major league history, landing him his first career MVP Award. It seems kind of weird to type, but Acuña is going into his seventh major league season at this point, even though he won’t turn 27 until after next season is over. He has appeared in 673 regular season games over that span, but was limited to just 46 in the shortened 2020 season and 82 in 2021 due to an ACL injury. (He also has 29 postseason contests under his belt so far.)

Despite his limited time, Acuña is making his mark in the Atlanta Braves’ franchise record books. Below is a look at where he ranks on some of the franchise’s most prominent leaderboards, mostly courtesy of Baseball Reference. While you look these over, keep in mind that Acuña is under contract through 2026 and has two club options that will almost certainly be picked up that will keep him in Atlanta through at least 2028.

Position Player WAR

19th: 26.7 by fWAR

18th: 25.9 by bWAR/rWAR

We are talking about Baseball Reference’s version of WAR (bWAR or rWAR) here. His total currently ranks 18th in franchise history. Of the players ranked ahead of Acuña, all but one of them spent at least eight seasons in a Braves uniform. If you conservatively projected Acuña for two more 5-win seasons, that would move him pretty much into the Top 10 in franchise history.

Batting Average

27th: .292

This one will be worth tracking over the next few seasons. Over his first five seasons as a professional, Acuña had a .277 batting average in just under 2,300 plate appearances. He hit .337 during his MVP season in 2023. Acuña’s career .292 average is 27th in franchise history and just behind Fred McGriff, Joe Torre and Freddie Freeman. Boston Braves outfielder Billy Hamilton is the franchise leader with a .339 career average.

One notable thing here is that if you adjust for league average, Acuña’s average is 16 percent better than the league’s, which is 11th in franchise history.

On-Base Percentage

12th: .381

Acuña currently ranks 12th in franchise history with a .381 on-base percentage. Again, this number got a big boost after his 2023 season. He put up a .370 on-base percentage over his first five seasons and then got on base at a .416 clip last season. Billy Hamilton is the franchise leader at .456, but Chipper Jones holds the modern day record at .401.

Similarly to above, his OBP is 18 percent better than league average, which puts him ninth in franchise history already.

Slugging Percentage

2nd: .537

Here is an impressive one. In the franchise history of the Braves, only one player has a better mark than Acuña’s .537 slugging percentage. That player, of course, is Hank Aaron who slugged .567 during his time in a Braves uniform. For context, Chipper Jones is fourth in franchise history at .529.

This is where adjusting for league average knocks him down, though. He has prodigious power in an era of prodigious power, and his slugging of “only” 27 percent above league average is “just” 11th-highest in franchise history. (It’s worth noting, though, that it’s fourth among players with 3,000+ PAs as a Brave. Rate stats, man.)

OPS and wRC+

3rd: .918

7th: 143

Acuña’s career OPS of .918 is currently third in franchise history trailing only Hank Aaron (.944) and Chipper Jones (.930). Again that is pretty good company. By wRC+, he’s seventh, but three of the guys above him had only around 1,000 PAs as a Brave. Among the others, he only trails Aaron, Eddie Mathews, and Rico Carty.

Runs Scored

27th: 543

Now we’re moving into the counting stats. As we go through these, keep in mind that Acuña has 673 games played in his career. He set the modern day record in 2023 with 149 runs scored and is currently in 27th place on the all-time list with 543, which is pretty crazy given that he’s not even near 30 yet. That is more than David Justice, Brian McCann and Ron Gant. Another 100-run season would vault him into the top 20 in franchise history.

Hits

48th: 767

Acuña had 217 hits during his MVP season and now has 767 for his career, which is the 48th most in franchise history. Acuña is eight hits behind Dansby Swanson and 11 back of Mark Lemke. Another 200-hit season in 2024 would push him into the top 30 on the all-time franchise list.

Total Bases

31st: 1,409

Acuña has accumulated 1,409 total bases over his six seasons in the majors. That currently ranks him 31st on the Braves’ all-time list, just two behind Glenn Hubbard for the 30th spot. For added context, Acuña led the majors with 383 total bases in 2023. A 300-total base season in 2024 would move him into a tie for the 22nd spot on the list with Joe Torre.

Doubles

T-41st: 137

Acuña set a new career-high with 35 doubles last season and has 137 for his career, which has him tied for 41st place on the all-time list with Rico Carty. Hank Aaron is the all-time leader with 600 while Chipper Jones is second with 549. Freddie Freeman is a distant third with 367.

Home Runs

13th: 161

Acuña tied his career-high with 41 home runs last season and has 161 for his career, which is the 13th-most in Braves franchise history. He needs 39 home runs in 2024 to reach 200 for his career, which would also place him 10th in franchise history. Only five players have hit more than 271 home runs while with the Braves.

RBI

37th: 402

Despite hitting leadoff for most of his career, Acuña has driven in 100 runs in a season twice and has 402 for his career. That is more than Nick Markakis and Jeff Francouer had during their time in Atlanta. He is just behind Glenn Hubbard and Dansby Swanson and should pass both Fred McGriff and Ryan Klesko this season. Another 100-RBI season would move him into 25th place on the all-time list.

Walks

28th: 341

Acuña walked a career-high 80 times in 2023 and now has 341 free passes in his career. That is 28th on the all-time list. Chipper Jones is the franchise leader with 1,512 walks. Mathews is second, followed by Aaron.

Stolen Bases

12th: 180

Acuña’s 73 steals last season gave him 180 for his career and moved him into 12th place. He needs seven more to move ahead of Otis Nixon and 10 more to pass Rafael Furcal, which would put him in the top 10 in franchise history. Hank Aaron holds the modern day record for career stolen bases with 240, but that is just the sixth most in franchise history. Herman Long, with 434 career steals, is the franchise leader.

Stolen Base Success Rate

2nd: 79.65%

One final rate stat, which is impressive when you consider how aggressive Acuña has been on the bases over the last two seasons. His success rate of 79.65% is the second-best mark in franchise history behind only Ozzie Albies who is at 80%. Albies only has 95 attempts in his career. Rafael Furcal (78.1%) is third and Hank Aaron (77.1%) is fourth.

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