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Ronald Acuna Jr. exits game after being hit by pitch in the shoulder

The outfielder had gone deep in the first game of the Braves’ twin bill against the Mets.

Ronald Acuna Jr. of the Atlanta Braves reacts after the fourth inning against the Atlanta Braves in game one of a doubleheader at Citi Field on May 01, 2023 in the Queens borough of New York City. Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Update — Thankfully, X-rays were negative, and Acuna won’t be forced to miss any time — the MVP candidate is back in the lineup for Tuesday night’s game against the Miami Marlins.

May 1 — A few hours after sending a ball into low orbit in game one of the Atlanta Braves’ doubleheader against the New York Mets, Ronald Acuna Jr. was forced to leave the nightcap in the top of the first after Tylor Megill hit him in the shoulder with a 93-mph fastball.

The pitch didn’t seem intentional — Megill was up in the count 0-2, for one thing — but there’s certainly no love lost between these two teams, and the Braves hit three Mets in the first game this afternoon. Kevin Pillar replaced Acuna in right field, while the team has yet to issue any sort of official diagnosis.

Now fully past the ACL rehab that cost him the beginning of the 2022 season, Acuna has been in vintage form so far this season, slashing .352/.440/.546 with four homers and a league-leading 13 steals entering play on Monday. The former NL Rookie of the Year has worn out the Mets just like he’s worn out everyone else, with a career .304/.385/.541 line and 13 homers over 65 games.