Atlanta Braves slugger Marcell Ozuna wants to block out the noise. While convenient, he could use a little constructive criticism in his life.
Marcell Ozuna will be on the Braves Opening Day roster, more likely than not, because of what he can do at the plate. When at his best, Ozuna can provide one of the more destructive bats in the National League.
So, what’s the problem?
Ozuna hasn’t been himself since the 2020 season, when he led the league in home runs through the shortened 60-game slate. Atlanta signed Ozuna to a contract extension which has backfired to this point. He will make $16 million in 2023 and 2024, though he hasn’t played like a player who deserves that kind of life-altering cash.
Being overpaid is one thing. Liberty Media has plenty of money.
Doing so and having off-field problems is another. Ozuna was involved in a domestic violence case in 2021, and a DUI in 2022.
Braves: Marcell Ozuna doesn’t listen to his haters
Marcell Ozuna hears all the noise, and he doesn’t care as he focuses on the task at hand, which is becoming a more consistent force at the plate. That’s not necessarily the wrong mindset, but admitting it to the public is a bad idea.
In Ozuna’s situation especially, he should hear the criticism, just as it pertains to his off-field drama. Braves fans are right to question his intentions and character considering his criminal history. While we all believe in second chances, one has to earn that opportunity, and it doesn’t come by refusing to accept reality.
By the sounds of that quote, Ozuna only listens to the positive interactions he has with fans, rather than those who rightly voice their disappointment. Even those so-called haters would love to see Ozuna succeed in a Braves uniform, assuming he does so the right way and stays out of trouble off the field.
Repeating the same mentality will only lead to similar mistakes down the road.