Despite Being Fiercest MVP Rival, Mookie Betts Lauds $100 Million MVP Challenger’s ‘Crazy’ Historic Milestone

Published 09/29/2023, 7:00 AM EDT

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Things are heating up in the National League. With just a few days remaining in the regular season, teams are either celebrating playoff contention or regretting elimination. But while baseball is a team sport, each individual that makes up a roster is equally effective. This year, Mookie Betts is dominating the NL MVP talks, along with a few others.

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The Los Angeles Dodgers player has been a delight to watch defensively, especially after his slow start to the season. But as the midway point of 2023 arrived, it was as if Betts was on fire. His performance catapulted him to the forefront of MVP talks, along with teammate Freddie Freeman. But there’s another who is giving these two fierce competition, and even Betts acknowledges him.

Mookie Betts is a Ronald Acuña Jr. Fan

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The Atlanta Braves have passed the 100-won games milestone in 2023 largely in part due to Ronald Acuña Jr. The 25-year-old has accomplished the unachievable this year, setting new records in the majors. Last month, he was the first player to ever hit 30 home runs and steal 60 bases. The number slowly climbed to 40 moonshots, another massive feat for any slugger. Then two days ago, Acuña made history again.

 

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The first-ever player to have a 40-70 season, the Braves slugger has given an MVP-worthy performance all season long. And Mookie Betts admits it. Sharing a post from MLB that lauds Acuña to his Instagram story, the Dodgers’ right fielder was clearly in awe. “I hope y’all know how crazy this is,” he wrote, with a mindblown emoji attached.

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He even admitted to The Orange County Register, “There are so many guys that have played really good and there’s no argument to what Acuña has been doing.”

Indeed, it’s a historic milestone that no one in the league in its decades of existence has achieved. The Braves stopped the game against the Chicago Cubs to share some highlights of Acuña’s brilliant season. Although the Cubs broadcast wasn’t too happy about it, many felt that the slugger deserved applause.

Betts Isn’t Overly Concerned With Losing Out on MVP

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There are some who would rather have individual titles in addition to team awards, while others are just satisfied with team success. Mookie Betts is one of the latter. Having already won an MVP in 2018 with The Boston Red Sox, The Dodgers slugger would rather add another World Series ring to his collection.

Ronald Acuña Jr. Dominates MVP Talks, but He Shows He’s No Mookie Betts with This Move

“I don’t know, man. MVP is cool, but it’s kind of irrelevant. We play to win the World Series,” Betts said. “Individual goals are really cool and some people play for that and there’s nothing wrong with that at all. But me, I play because I want to win. If I play good, cool. I would love to play well, but as long as we win, that’s all I care about.”

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Looks like his goals are clear! Whether or not Betts clinches an MVP, he certainly wouldn’t mind another Fall Classic title.

WATCH THIS STORY – Mookie Betts Leaves LeBron James and Messi To Face Off Against Ronald Acuña Jr.: A Star Showdown

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Written by:

Arunima Bhanot

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Arunima Bhanot is an MLB writer at EssentiallySports. Her tryst with MLB was accidental, but what followed was nothing short of a pursuit of excellence. Arunima's articles have been recognized as Editor's Picks on multiple occasions, highlighting her exceptional attention to detail and insightful coverage.
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Edited by:

Deepanshi Bajaj

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