Braves' Marcell Ozuna Arrested for Domestic Violence Cops Allegedly Witnessed ... Granted $20k Bond

2:05 PM PT -- 5/31 -- Ozuna's been granted a $20k bond and is expected to be released from jail later Monday. He's also been ordered to stay away from his wife, and attorneys for the couple stated in court that they're in the process of divorce.

8:45 PM PT -- Sandy Springs PD tells TMZ Sports they witnessed Marcell Ozuna grab his wife by the neck and slam her into a wall -- in addition to striking her with his injured arm.

It’s all part of a bombshell statement issued by the Sandy Springs PD, which confirms the alleged victim is, in fact, Ozuna’s wife

And, then add: Here is the statement from the police, in full.

Earlier today at 12:26 PM, Sandy Springs Police Officers received a 911 call requesting they respond to a residence on Windsor Cove regarding an assault in progress. As Officers arrived to the home, they heard screaming coming from inside and noticed the front door wide open. Due to the exigency of the known facts, Officers entered the residence through the open door and witnessed the suspect grabbing the victim by the neck and throwing her against a wall.

Officers were able to immediately take the suspect into custody without further incident. In addition to the strangulation attempts, the suspect also struck the victim with his arm which has a cast from a previous injury. Preliminary investigation has revealed this incident to be domestic related between the suspect and his wife, both residents of the Windsor Cove home.

The suspect, Marcell Ozuna was arrested and has been charged with the following:

- Aggravated Assault by Strangulation under the Domestic Violence Act
- Battery under the Domestic Violence Act

The victim did have visible injuries, but was not transported to the hospital.

The suspect has been booked into the Fulton County Jail on the above charges and is awaiting prosecution.

Atlanta Braves star Marcell Ozuna was arrested for domestic violence on Saturday ... and is currently sitting in county jail in Georgia.

The 30-year-old outfielder was arrested by Sandy Springs PD (GA) and booked into Fulton County Jail (GA) earlier today for "Aggravated Assault Strangulation" and Battery on a family member, according to jail records.

The records indicate the alleged incident occurred on Saturday. The alleged victim is not identified.

The 2x All-Star -- who was placed on the IL after mangling his fingers at a play at 3rd base earlier this week -- is listed at 6'2", 237 lbs., per jail records.

The Braves -- who signed Ozuna to a 4-year, $65 million deal in 2020 -- issued a statement addressing the arrest.

"We learned of Marcell Ozuna's arrest earlier this evening and immediately informed the commissioner's office. The Braves fully support Major League Baseball's policy on domestic violence which stresses to the fullest that our society cannot and will not tolerate domestic violence in any form," the Braves said.

"Until the investigation is completed, we will have no further comment and all inquiries into the matter should be referred to the office of the commissioner."

FYI, Genesis Ozuna, Marcell's wife, was arrested in June 2020 for allegedly hitting the MLB star in the face with a soap dish.

Originally Published -- 5/29 7:54 PM PT

Hank Aaron Memorial Service Held In Atlanta ... Teammates, Legends Pay Respects

Hank Aaron's closest friends and teammates joined to pay their respects to the late baseball legend on Tuesday ... with the Atlanta Braves hosting an emotional memorial service.

Hammerin' Hank -- who famously finished his career with 755 home runs -- died last Friday of natural causes.

GREAT PLAYER, BETTER MAN
Atlanta Braves

Names like Chipper Jones, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred and Marquis Grissom spoke at the ceremony in person.

Chipper told the story about how Hank told the Braves to draft him back in the day.

"Y'all better draft that Jones boy. I'll never forget that," Jones regaled ... "That comment must carry some weight."

Jones added, "I respected the man so much. I wouldn't want to disappoint him or his family."

Rob Manfred explained why it was destiny for Hank to break Babe Ruth's career home run record.

"Just like Jackie Robinson was the perfect person to change our game forever, Hank Aaron was the perfect person to see the historic moment he created in 1974."

Other stars like John Smoltz, Tom Glavine, Dusty Baker, Dale Murphy, Freddie Freeman and more paid tribute via pre-recorded videos.

Glavine said, "We've all seen the movie 'Field of Dreams' ... if there is a baseball team in heaven, they just picked up one heck of a clean-up hitter."

Other Braves alum in attendance include Ron Gant, Gary Matthews and Jeff Francoeur.

Hank Aaron Dead at 86

11:27 AM PT -- President Barack Obama released a passionate statement on the late legend ... praising him for being an icon and leader on and off the diamond.

"Whenever Michelle and I spent time with Hank and his wife, Billye, we were struck by their kindness, generosity and grace -- and were reminded that we stood on the shoulders of a previous generation of trailblazers."

"Today, Michelle and I send our thoughts and prayers to the Aaron family and everyone who was inspired by this unassuming man and his towering example."

10:07 AM PT -- Barry Bonds -- the man who famously broke Aaron's home run record -- shared a heartfelt post on the legend's passing Friday.

"I was lucky enough to spend time with Hank on several occasions during my career and have always had the deepest respect and admiration for all that he did both on and off the field."

"He is an icon, a legend and a true hero to so many, who will be forever missed."

"Hank Aaron -- thank you for everything you ever taught us, for being a trailblazer through adversity and setting an example for all of us African-American ballplayers who came after you."

"Being able to grow up and have the idols and role models I did, helped shape me for a future I could have never dreamed of."

9:01 AM PT -- The Atlanta Braves say they're "absolutely devastated" by the death of Aaron ... calling him a "beacon for our organization."

"His incredible talent and resolve helped him achieve the highest accomplishments, yet he never lost his humble nature," the MLB org. said Friday.

"Henry Louis Aaron wasn't just our icon, but one across Major League Baseball and around the world. His success on the diamond was matched only by his business accomplishments off the field and capped by his extraordinary philanthropic efforts."

Hank Aaron -- one of the greatest baseball players of all time -- has died. He was 86.

The Hall of Famer reportedly passed away Friday morning. We're working on the details.

Hammerin' Hank is widely considered one of the greatest baseball players of all time -- he famously broke Babe Ruth's home run record of 714 in 1973.

During his legendary career, he made 25 All-Star teams and won the NL MVP in 1957.

Aaron made his MLB debut when he was only 20 -- launching a 23-year career that would go down in the record books.

He retired from playing in 1976 and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown in 1982. He's also in the Atlanta Braves Hall of Fame and the team retired his #44 uniform.

In fact, he's such a legend in Atlanta ... the city's mayor said Friday his death is nothing short of devastating.

"While the world knew him as 'Hammering Hank Aaron' because of his incredible, record-setting baseball career," Keisha Lance Bottoms said, "he was a cornerstone of our village, graciously and freely joining Mrs. Aaron in giving their presence and resources toward making our city a better place."

Among his many career highlights, a World Series victory in 1957 -- the same year he won National League MVP. He also won 3 Gold Gloves, 2 NL batting titles and led the NL in home runs in 4 separate years.

Hank finished his career with an unreal 755 home runs -- a record that lasted decades until Barry Bonds broke it in 2007.

Aaron was a hero right up until the end of his life -- earlier this month, Hank and his wife Billye went to the Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta to get their COVID vaccine shots in the hopes of inspiring other Black Americans to follow his lead.

Aaron started off in the Negro Leagues, signing with the Indianapolis Clowns in 1951. He played with the team for 3 months -- earning just $200 per month. He signed with the Atlanta Braves in 1952 and kicked around the minor leagues until 1954.

Superstars from sports, entertainment, politics and more are paying tribute to Aaron …

"Rest in Peace to American hero, icon, and Hall of Famer Hank Aaron," Magic Johnson said. "I still remember where I was back in the day when he set the record, at that time, to become the home run all time leader."

"While a legendary athlete, Hank Aaron was also an extraordinary businessman and paved the way for other athletes like me to successfully transition into business. Hank Aaron is on the Mount Rushmore for the greatest baseball players of all time! Rest In Peace my friend."

Added Bill Russell, "Heartbroken to see another true friend & pioneer has passed away. [Hank Aaron] was so much better than his reputation! His contributions were much more than just baseball. Jeannine & I send our prayers & deepest condolences to his wife & kids."

Legendary MLB slugger Frank Thomas also issued a statement on Twitter, writing, "I’m speechless! RIP to the greatest of all time Mr. Hank Aaron!! I’m just stunned. Hank was the standard of greatness for me. The one man who I acted like a kid around star struck always! He was the definition of class! God Bless you and your family!!"

Mike Trout added ... "You were and are an inspiration to be a better person on and off the field. We lost a true LEGEND of the game today... #RIPHankAaron 🙏🏼"

Cal Ripkin, Jr. shared his condolences, saying, "I’m saddened to learn of Hank’s passing. He was a giant in our game and inspired so many on and off the field."

"What he endured and how he persevered to surpass the all-time HR record, thought to be unbreakable, was remarkable. My thoughts are with his family and @Braves fans."

RIP

Originally Published -- 7:39 AM PT

Phil Niekro Knuckleball Pitcher Dead at 81 ... After Cancer Battle

Hall of Fame pitcher Phil Niekro -- famous for his wicked knuckleball that allowed him to pitch as an older guy -- has died.

The Atlanta Braves made the announcement Sunday, saying Niekro passed away Saturday in his sleep at his home in the ATL suburb of Flowery Branch. They say he'd been battling cancer for a while.

The Braves heaped praise on Phil ... "Knucksie was woven into the Braves fabric, first in Milwaukee and then in Atlanta. Phil baffled batters on the field and later was always the first to join in our community activities." They add that he was a longtime presence in their clubhouse and community for years to come after finally retiring from baseball in 1987.

Niekro was one of the rare knuckleball pitchers who could seemingly wield an uncontrollable and unpredictable pitch ... a rare skill that helped him stay on the mound well into his 40s, which isn't all that common in baseball (for pitchers, anyway). And, yes, his stuff was nasty.

He had a cumulative ERA of 3.35 over the course of his 23-year career, with a total of 3,342 strikeouts and a win record of 318. Phil got his start in the big leagues with the Braves in '64 and played for them until 1983, at which he began to bounce around a few different teams.

The man played for the Yankees, the Indians, the Blue Jays ... and finally, circled back to his first love and ended his career in Atlanta. During his final outing on September 27, he received a massive standing ovation from the crowd as he bid them and baseball adieu.

Phil was a five-time gold glove winner and a five-time all-star, plus the recipient of tons of other accolades ... including the MLB ERA leader at one point, the National League strikeout leader and more. PN was inducted into the MLB HOF in 1997 as fifth ballot candidate.

He's survived by his wife, Nancy, his three sons and grandchildren. He was 81.

RIP

Dodgers' Cody Bellinger Dislocated Shoulder In HR Celebration ... 'I'm Good'

L.A. Dodgers hero Cody Bellinger confirmed what we were all thinking ... he DID dislocate his shoulder while celebrating his game-winning HR on Sunday.

... but he popped it right back in and now he says he's good to go!

25-year-old Bellinger smashed a solo donger in the 7th inning of the NLCS -- giving the Dodgers a 4-3 lead, which ultimately was enough for L.A. to beat the Atlanta Braves.

After he crossed home plate, Bellinger shared a jumping forearm bash with teammate Kike Hernandez -- and viewers could see, it appeared Bellinger suffered an injury during the celebration.

After the game, Bellinger confirmed it was a dislocation of his right shoulder.

"I hit Kike’s shoulder a little too hard and my shoulder popped out," Bellinger told MLB Network.

"So, I had to go back in the training room. They popped it back in and I was ready to play some defense. It kinda hurt!"

Bellinger reported that he's "good" now -- and Dodgers fans are praying the shoulder won't bother him in the World Series.

In the meantime, Belli says he'll celebrate with his OTHER arm moving forward.

"Yeah, I'm gonna maybe use my left arm ... I’ve never dislocated that one. So, I'll go left arm."

As for Kike, he told reporters after the game -- "Now Belli knows not to mess with people who are way stronger than him!"

Braves Star Ronald Acuna Jr. Trolls Reds' Bauer After Series Win ... 'Go Home!!!'

Atlanta superstar Ronald Acuna Jr. dumped a whole bottle of salt in Trevor Bauer's playoff exit wound Thursday ... trolling the hell out of the Reds pitcher -- and it was SAVAGE!!!

Here's the deal ... Bauer was flat-out dominant in Game 1 of the Braves-Reds wild-card round series -- and he showboated for most of the outing, even hitting Conor McGregor's famous billi strut on the mound.

But, once Bauer was pulled, Atlanta was able to lock up the win in extra innings. And, on Thursday, the Braves beat the Reds once again ... sending Bauer and his team packing.

Afterward, Acuna went after Trevor in an epic tweet ... writing, "Goooo homeeeee" with a crying emoji and a GIF of Marc Gasol hittin' the billi strut!

Yeah, SHEESH!!!!

The tweet hit so hard ... Bauer's agent, Rachel Luba, just had to comment on it -- writing, "Haha I can respect a good troll game...but to be fair, TB still owned you, regardless of outcome."

Bauer's shockingly yet to fire back ... but we're sure there will be some sort of Twitter/YouTube/Instagram post on it all coming soon.

In the meantime ... enjoy the offseason?

Atlanta Braves Hang 29 Runs on Miami Marlins ... In Historic Shellacking

29 RUNS!!!

The Atlanta Braves scored 29 runs in ONE GAME against the Miami Marlins on Wednesday ... one of the highest-scoring games in MLB history!

The star of the game was Adam Duvall -- the left fielder smashed 3 home runs Wednesday ... including a 7th inning grand slam!

Duvall ended up with 9 RBIs!!!

Freddie Freeman also balled out -- with 6 RBIs on 3 hits, including a 2-run homer.

In total, the Braves hit SEVEN home runs in the 29-9 victory at Truist Park in ATL, in front of zero fans.

The 29 runs from the Braves tie for the 2nd most runs scored in an MLB game in the modern era.

The Texas Rangers posted 30 against the Orioles in 2007. Before that, the Red Sox posted 29 in 1950 and the White Sox scored 29 in 1955.

After the game, Freeman couldn't believe it.

"Pretty amazing ... Hard to put into words, really, when you look up and see 29 runs on the board."

Duvall was also stoked.

"I've known that homers come in bunches, but something like that is pretty special ... I'm going to enjoy this one tonight."

Congrats!

Blue Jays' Reese McGuire Trolled By Braves Organist Over Masturbation Bust ... 'Beat It'

LOW BLOW
Courtesy Of MLB

THIS IS SAVAGE!!!

Blue Jays catcher Reese McGuire was epically trolled by the Atlanta Braves team organist mid-game Thursday ... and the scene was laugh out loud funny!!

McGuire -- playing in his first game since TMZ Sports posted video of his SUPER awkward masturbation bust -- was walking up to the plate in the 3rd inning when he was greeted by "Beat It" over the Atlanta loudspeakers.

The Michael Jackson tune played for several seconds ... and if you get the reference -- try not to smile!!

BUSTED

Of course, McGuire was stopped by cops in a parking lot last February after witnesses say they saw him inside of his car pleasuring himself.

In police footage of the incident ... McGuire apologized profusely for his actions, saying, "I've realized that I made a mistake having my pants down and doing what I was doing."

He added, "I really am apologetic. And, I know I shouldn't have been doing this."

McGuire eventually was forced to pay fines and fees over it all after cutting a deal with prosecutors ... but clearly, MLB teams ain't going to let him off that easy.

To make matters worse for McGuire ... he finished the night 0-for-3 with two strikeouts after the troll job -- AND the Jays lost in heartbreaking walk-off fashion.

Talk about a tough day at the plate.

Braves' Nick Markakis Opts Back In To MLB Season ... 'Felt Like I Needed To Be Out There'

Nick Markakis is back ... the Atlanta Braves OF says he made a "rash" decision initially opting out of the MLB season -- and now, he says he's ready to rejoin his teammates.

"Sometimes in life you make rash decisions without thinking things through," the 36-year-old told reporters Wednesday. "At the time, I thought it was the right decision."

Nick chose to sit out just before the start of Braves' summer camp earlier this month ... saying a conversation with teammate Freddie Freeman cemented his feelings on the matter

At the time, Freddie was sick as hell with COVID-19 ... and Nick wanted no part of that battle -- so he left the squad.

But, Markakis said Wednesday he's back for good ... and while he admitted he's still not sure it's the RIGHT decision -- he felt like he just had to do it for his teammates.

"Sitting at home," Markakis said, "watching these guys compete the last couple days and all the risks that they're taking going out there, you know, I just in a way, deep down, that pit in my stomach, I felt like I needed to be out there."

It's a huge boost for the Braves ... Atlanta needed some outfield help after their agreement with Yasiel Puig fell through due to a positive coronavirus case earlier this month.

Markakis has spent the last 5 seasons with the Braves ... and batted .285 last season with 9 home runs. He's expected to join Atlanta's lineup in the next few days.

MLB Star Freddie Freeman 'Feeling Great' ... After Intense Battle With COVID-19

Great news ... Atlanta Braves superstar Freddie Freeman is finally "feeling great" -- this just 1 week after his wife said he was in rough shape after contracting coronavirus.

Last Friday, Chelsea Freeman said her 30-year-old hubby was hit "like a ton of bricks" by COVID-19 ... suffering from fever, headaches, chills and body aches.

In her post, Chelsea sounded VERY concerned for the MLB superstar ... writing, "He is someone who rarely gets sick."

But, Chelsea provided an encouraging update Thursday ... saying Freddie is now "feeling great!"

"Our whole family is healthy," she said. "Thank God!"

Freddie has yet to rejoin the Braves for summer camp, and even though it seems unlikely at the moment he'll be a part of the team for Opening Day later this month -- manager Brian Snitker has said he's still hopeful.

Freddie is one of the best players in the entire sport ... he's a four-time All-Star with a career .293 batting average.

The Braves, meanwhile, are expected to make a serious run at the World Series with Freddie in their lineup this season.

MLB Star Freddie Freeman Cat Killed In Hit And Run 'Our Hearts Are Broken'

Tragic news from Atlanta Braves star Freddie Freeman's family ... their beloved pet cat, Benji, was killed in a hit-and-run Monday night.

"He was struck by a car who didn’t even stop to check on him ... we found him too late. Our hearts are broken," Freddie's wife, Chelsea, said in an emotional post on Instagram.

"He was the best cat you could ever ask for, he was more like a dog or even a person," Chelsea said ... adding Benji was very close with their 3-year-old son, Charlie.

"He would run and greet us at the front door, chase baseballs and jump on the trampoline with Charlie... he and Charlie were best friends and he was a cherished child to us for the last 6 years."

The Atlanta Braves shared their condolences in the comments section, saying "We love you, Freeman family ❤️ Benji was the best!"

Chelsea ended the sad post with a heartbreaking line -- "I know Freddie’s mom and Grandma are loving on him in heaven but God does this hurt💔 We love you so much Benji💔"

#RIP

John Smoltz Selling GA Mansion With Baseball Field ... For $5.2 Million!!!

2:08 PM PT -- TMZ Sports ran into Smoltz out in NYC before he was set to call the Yankees-Astros playoff game Thursday ... and ya gotta hear his modest take on his Georgia mansion!!

STAYIN' CLOSE TO HOME
TMZSports.com

John Smoltz's incredible Georgia estate -- complete with a baseball field, basketball court, football field, golf course AND a pool -- is hitting the market ... and it's listed at a whoppin' $5.2 MILLION!!!

Not only is the 19-acre property a sports fan's paradise ... it's also got a HUGE mansion with 10 bedrooms and 10 bathrooms!!!

The crib, listed by Harry Norman Realtors agent Alex McGraw, comes with several master suites, a chef's kitchen, multiple bars and an office.

There's also a room in the house called the "Gentlemen's Study" -- which we think is a super fancy way of saying "Man Cave."

And, if privacy is your thing, this place is locked up tighter than a drum -- double gates to keep out the riffraff and a gated parking court so nobody scuffs your Bentley.

Seriously, check out the pics. The place is awesome.

The Hall of Famer had the home built in 2002 -- and has put it on the market in the past -- but we're told he's more motivated than ever to sell!!!

According to the listing agent, the estate was appraised earlier this year ... and the asking price is way LESS than its appraisal value. So yeah, you're getting a steal!!!

Of course, Smoltz is an Atlanta legend and spent the majority of his career with the Braves, and reportedly made more than $135 MILLION during his 21-year MLB career.

Originally Published -- 9:21 AM PT

MLB's Freddie Freeman 2-Year-Old Son Rips Living Room Bombs ... Amazing Swing!!!

BORN FOR THIS

The baseball doesn't fall too far from the tree in the Freddie Freeman household ...

Here's 2-year-old Charlie Freeman CRUSHING Wiffle balls in the Atlanta Braves slugger's house ... and check out the kid's amazing swing!!!

Of course, Freddie is a lefty with some of the most pop in the entire MLB ... but his son is growing up a righty -- and seems he's definitely on track to follow in Dad's footsteps regardless.

The video -- which was posted by Freeman's wife, Chelsea, on Freddie's off day with the fam on Wednesday -- is impressive, but it ain't a one-time thing ... Chelsea throws up vids of Charlie crushing balls all the time!!!

Waiting for your permission to load the Instagram Media.

Charlie is super adorable after blasting the taters ... you can see in the vid he goes over to the living room coffee table to make sure all his toys celebrate his homers with him! It's adorable.

The Freemans are a super tight-knit family ... Freddie flies home on his off days to hang with Chelsea and Charlie all the time ... with Chelsea writing back in 2017, "I'm pretty sure he is the best daddy in the world!!!"

M-V-P! M-V-P! M-V-P!

Tom Glavine Braves' O Is Legit Better Than '95 WS Team!!!

SOME STRONG PARALLELS
TMZSports.com

Sorry, Chipper Jones ... Tom Glavine says Ronald Acuna Jr., Freddie Freeman and this year's version of the Braves' offense is BETTER than the 1995 Atlanta team that won it all!!

"They're good," Glavine says ... "They're pretty good."

Of course, the bats on the '95 squad were awesome ... Chipper, Fred McGriff, Javy Lopez and Ryan Klesko helped power the team to its third-ever World Series championship.

But, when we got Glavine -- who was a star pitcher on that roster -- out in NYC this week ... he told us he believes this year's team has more pop!

As for this year's Braves pitching staff ... Glavine wasn't about to go crazy with the praise -- he says him, Greg Maddux, John Smoltz and the rest of the 'pen definitely had the edge there.

"We had a good rotation," the Hall of Famer says.

By the way, Glavine told us he's super high on the youngest Braves' superstar, Acuna ... comparing him to an all-time Braves legend -- ANDRUW JONES!!!

Rockies' Jon Gray Concerned About Free Agency ... After Keuchel/Kimbrel Drama

IT'S HARD OUT HERE
TMZSports.com

Colorado Rockies stud pitcher Jon Gray says he's nervous about the possibility of free agency in a couple years ... saying the drama that Dallas Keuchel and Craig Kimbrel just went through has him shaken up.

"There's been a lot of trouble with guys finding jobs, even though regardless of the situation and how talented they are," Gray tells TMZ Sports.

"It's kind of strange seeing something like that happen."

Of course, despite being two of the best pitchers in all of baseball .. Keuchel and Kimbrel remained unsigned until just a few days ago -- when the Braves and Cubs finally gave in.

That whole ordeal has 27-year-old Gray concerned ... 'cause the pitcher tells us he's starting to get an uneasy feeling about the possibility of his free agency future in 2022.

"There's so many unknowns," Gray says.

But, Jon tells us he ain't worrying that much ... saying, "I just try to keep my faith and know that tomorrow is going to come. And, no matter what I'll be where I'm supposed to."

MLB's Josh Ravin I'm Bionic Now!!! Shows X-Ray After Line Drive to Face

Wanna see what it takes to fix a broken face after getting hit with a 98 mph ball???

MLB pitcher Josh Ravin took a screaming line drive to the face while playing for the Atlanta Braves' Triple-A affiliate, Gwinnett Stripers, last June. It was a scary sight ... JR dropped to the ground in pain and had to be carted off the field.

Fast-forward to today ... and Ravin is showing off all the work that had to be put into fixin' his mug after the unfortunate incident ... and it's giving off Terminator vibes!!!

"This photo is the end result.. 5 fractures, a concussion, plastic surgery, 2 plates and 11 screws later," Ravin says, showing off an x-ray of the finished product.

"Here I Am! A bionic, terminator looking human, More determined than ever!..I've always considered myself a 'savage' but I never thought it'd be possible to become an even BIGGER SAVAGE!"

Ravin -- who's a flamethrower with a 99 mph fastball -- had a stint with the L.A. Dodgers before playing with the Braves organization in 2018.

The dude's made a full recovery ... and is already back on the mound pitching for the Chiba Lotte Marines in Japan!!!

Old news is old news!
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