The Mets just completed a very expensive and dramatic shift at the trade deadline. Several top prospects were inserted into the farm system, with infielder Luisangel Acuña being the crown jewel of them all.
Immediately upon getting acquired via trade with the Texas Rangers, Acuña became the Mets’ second-best prospect, according to MLB.com. Once the post-trade-deadline updates are complete, he’s expected to take the top spot.
He’s currently in Double-A with the Binghamton Rumble Ponies. Through eight games and 36 plate appearances, he’s slashed just .194/.306/.226 with one extra-base hit (a double). Those numbers will come (he was hitting .315/.377/.453 for Texas’ Double-A affiliate before the trade). What makes the Mets so excited about him, though, is his speed and raw athleticism.
Here’s a glimpse of that from the other day. Acuña got hit on the foot by a pitch. He then proceeded to steal second and third before scoring on a ground ball with the infield in.
An electric trip around the bases with Luisangel Acuña:
– hit by pitch
– steals second
– steals third
– scores on fielder's choice pic.twitter.com/PcxlcLiQVf
— SNY Mets (@SNY_Mets) August 9, 2023
Before the trade, Acuña had racked up 42 steals. He’s added four more since landing in Binghamton. Those 46 thefts are already a single-season career-high mark for him. It’s also the third time he’s surpassed 40 steals in one year since becoming a pro in 2019.
How many will he end up with? That’s obviously to be determined, but he’s at least hoping he can overtake his brother, Ronald, in that department. If he doesn’t, his pockets will be a little lighter when they start training together this winter. MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo shed light on this friendly wager between the siblings:
Around the time he was traded from the Rangers to the Mets last month, Luisangel Acuña logged onto WhatsApp to post a video of himself stealing a base. This was nothing unusual for Acuña, a speedy prospect who had swiped more than 40 bags in barely half a season in Double-A. But when Luisangel’s famous brother, Ronald, saw the clip, he challenged him to a competition. The terms were simple: Whoever finishes the season with more steals wins $5,000.
Luisangel apparently never stopped to realize that he may have been hustled. Over his past 14 games, Ronald has stolen nine bases to build a commanding lead over his brother.
Prior to Thursday’s games, Ronald Acuña Jr. leads MLB with 53 steals. So, Luisangel has some work to do, but he’s certainly within striking distance of his brother. Especially if he can keep doing the things he did after getting hit by a pitch the other day.