Ureña and Acuña Get Into a Kerfuffle and 4 Exciting Things From Monday

Oh, and baseball is predetermined. But the cleats are cool!

Cronenworth Takes a Tumble

 

 

Sometimes, for all of their grace and strength, professional athletes remind us all that they are indeed human after all. Jake Cronenworth did his part to remind us of that fact Monday night, when he was bamboozled into falling on his wallet at the hands of a Kyle Freeland fastball to end the inning. Now while we have all certainly taken a spill at embarrassing moments in our lives, at least it (hopefully) hasn’t been televised to a national audience. The rookie Cronenworth did not have such a luxury, however, and most likely will be hearing about this strikeout from his teammates for quite some time. Luckily for him though, he still has his sterling .325 average to fall back on as a comeback.

 

Ureña vs. Acuña II: Electric Boogaloo

 

 

Death, taxes, and José Ureña beefing with Ronald Acuña Jr. Baseball is truly back. The latest chapter in the Ureña vs. Acuña rivalry unfolded Monday night, when an errant fastball drilled the Atlanta center fielder just above the elbow.

For the uninitiated, this is not the first time the two have clashed, and their rivalry dates back to 2018, when Ureña nailed Acuña with a fastball to halt his streak of home runs in five straight games. That had been Ureña’s fastest pitch of the season to that point, clocking in at 97.5 mph, and it was soon followed by the emptying of both Atlanta and Miami’s benches. Even the mild-mannered Freddie Freeman felt his blood boiling, saying “Fastest pitch he’s thrown all year, and it was clearly intentional, and it wasn’t right.”

The feud did not end there, however, and the Braves struck back the next time they saw Ureña in 2019. Kevin Gausman threw behind the pitcher in his first at-bat, and was immediately ejected from the game (I’m sure Ureña is grateful for the DH now).

Acuña finally got his revenge later that year, when he teed off on Ureña for a long home run on June 7. Following the blast, Acuña rattled off an emphatic bat flip and yelled to his teammates to celebrate. Many thought the dispute would end there, until Monday’s game brought it roaring back to life. Now, it is worth pointing out that Miami catcher Jorge Alfaro was setting up inside, so maybe it was truly an accidental pitch. However, considering the history between the two, you could be forgiven for thinking it was more than just a coincidence. The only one that knows for certain is Ureña himself.

 

Baseball is Scripted?

 

 

Fans also experienced a glimpse behind the curtain during Monday’s matchup between Miami and Atlanta, when a broadcast glitch seemingly telegraphed Ian Anderson‘s first pitch to Corey Dickerson. Unfortunately, this mishap blew the carefully constructed conspiracy that the athletes, writers, and baseball leadership have worked so hard to maintain over the last century. Yes, baseball, much like professional wrestling, is scripted. Now that the cat is out of the bag, I have to give credit to pitchers around the league for their pinpoint accuracy, like what we see from Anderson here. Although, it does make a little more sense now that MLB has seen such a rise in home runs over the last few years. After all, it must be easier to hit when you know what’s coming.

 

Cleat Watch

 

 

The last few years have seen an explosion of personality in baseball, from high arcing bat flips, to sweeping gold chains, and finally, to excellent custom cleat designs. Dee Strange-Gordon of the Seattle Mariners showed off his love of the Double-Double yesterday with his sweet spikes decorated in the In-N-Out Burger livery, complete with the signature palm trees. Baseball and cheeseburgers—if there is a better combo out there, I don’t want to hear it.

 

Have a wonderful Tuesday.

(Photo by Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire)

Noah Scott

Noah Scott is a long-suffering baseball writer and knuckleball connoisseur. If you want to talk old timey baseball names, traffic on the 405, or lukewarm hip-hop opinions you can find him on Twitter @noahascott6

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