Braves Rumors: Pete Alonso beef, Ozuna bounces back, a new trade target

Pete Alonso, Mets (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Pete Alonso, Mets (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /
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Marcell Ozuna, Atlanta Braves
Marcell Ozuna, Atlanta Braves. (Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images) /

Braves Rumors: Marcell Ozuna is back

Brian Snitker started Marcell Ozuna in the lineup just two days removed from an embarrassing, 415-foot single which led to his benching. That lack of hustle cannot be tolerated, and Ozuna owned up to it after the game.

Rather than taking the Ozuna beef a step further, Snitker considered his price paid. A public benching, and the manager being forced to comment on said matter to the media, was enough. Ozuna rewarded his manager’s confidence on Tuesday night, with a game-tying double after an extended rain delay. Atlanta came back to defeat the New York Mets in the first game of a critical early-June series.

“You can see it on my face,” Ozuna said. “I enjoy the game, have fun and give it my best.”

Ozuna’s off-field issues have been well documented. Ozuna was arrested for domestic violence and a DUI. This, combined with his poor play, would have tested the patience of even the most experienced front office executives.

Suddenly, Alex Anthopoulos looks smart for not letting Ozuna walk, despite what the outside world was telling him. Snitker praised Ozuna’s work ethic to get back to what the Braves knew he was capable of.

“He’s never given up on himself and he’s worked really hard,” Snitker said. “We know it’s in there. We’ve seen it with the [2020 season]. It’s good to see the hard work pays off.”

Ozuna’s late May and June numbers suggest he’s back to his 2020 self, at least for now. Should it continue, he’ll make the Braves lineup even more dangerous.