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The Marlins-Ronald Acuna Jr. feud added another chapter.
Marlins pitcher Pablo Lopez was ejected from Friday night’s game after hitting Acuna — who was just named a starting outfielder for the 2021 NL All-Star team — with his first pitch. Marlins manager Don Mattingly and pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre Jr. were also ejected.
The umpires, after a discussion, decided to eject Lopez. There were no warnings issued prior to the incident, but Acuna, 23, has had issues with the Marlins in the past — this is the sixth time they have thrown at the Braves star including the playoffs.
When Acuna entered the league in 2018, former Marlins pitcher Jose Urena was suspended six games for hitting the then-Braves rookie. Before him being hit that time, Acuna flipped his bat in celebration of a home run.
Acuna has dominated the Marlins during his career with a .330/.426/.700 slash line and notching 20 home runs and 49 RBIs in 51 regular-season games against them.
This season, Acuna has been hit with eight pitches in total, one short of his career-high in just half a season. But as usual, Acuna got the last laugh by scoring on Ozzie Albies’ sacrifice fly in the first inning. He has scored at least one run in every game against the Marlins this season.
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