Pujols is in his 22nd season in the Major League and is at least 42 years old. I say “at least” because some people within baseball circles don’t think anyone really knows how old the Pujols are. The ages of players from the Dominican Republic in the early 20th century have been known to have been falsified several times. However, the Cardinals player is at least 42 years old. Still, he’s having a very solid year, helping fill the Cardinals’ lineup.
He has 19 home runs this season and has scored a very respectable .261 goal. The new rule allowing a designated hitter in the National League allowed this.
“Winnie the Pujols” as I often call him because like a soft and cuddly teddy bear, he is clearly the first inducted into the Ballot Hall of Fame. But it deserves more recognition. Here are the two reasons why Albert Pujols is one of the most underrated players in baseball history.
2. Pujols’ amazing career achievements
Pujols, along with Aaron Judge, are on a historic hunt. It sits on 698 jobs at home. Only Barry Bonds, Hank Aaron, and Babe Ruth have hit over 700 during their careers. We all know that Bonds total is at least somewhat tainted. Yes, I am one of those guys who use steroids against a player. I don’t care about the argument that we don’t know who used and who didn’t during the steroid era. We know for sure that Bonds took the “dignity and clarity” he admitted.
Meanwhile, there hasn’t been a single whisper about Pujols’ use of performance-enhancing drugs. Almost all power hitters have been pegged from the early 2000s. Alex Rodriguez, Manny Ramirez, even David Ortiz have all failed the test at one point or another. Not Pujols. So, until I hear a reason why he should be collected with these characters, I refuse to do so. But I digress.
Pujols won the NL Rookie of the Year in 2001 and went on to have one of his greatest career starts on this side of Jimmie Foxx. Foxx had 500 home runs at the age of 32 before injuries derailed the rest of his career. Pujols had a 450 at that age, second more than ever.
He is an 11-time All-Star and a three-time League Player of the Year. This is tied to a laundry list of legends number two in baseball history. He’s won four Silver Slugger Awards, and drawn more than ever. Pujols led the league in runs and scored five times, led the league in total bases four times, and led the slowdown and OBP three times each.
Historically, he is 4th in home runs, 10th in hits, 3rd in RBI, 2nd in total bases and 5th in doubles.
There are three players in MLB history with 2,200 RBI.
– B/R Walk-Off (BRWalkoff) September 15, 2022
But he wasn’t just a power hitter. Pujols averaged between 0.312 and 0.357 in each of his first 10 years in the majors. Most of those classes were above 0.330. This is madness. An argument can be made that until leaving the Cardinals for the Angels in 2012, Pujols had had the greatest 10 years in MLB history.
But it wasn’t just an offensive machine. The Pujols also won the Golden Glove in 2006 and 2010 at first base. Until age started catching up with him, he was one of the best defensive base men in the game.
for #STLCards Superstar Albert Pujols, better known as “The Machine” is more than just a nickname. He talks about his photographic memory when it comes to some of the memorable moments in his career. Take a walk into Homer’s history through Pujols’ personal memories: https://t.co/sCwyktQbwr
– John Denton (@JohnDenton555) September 23, 2022
1. Ingenuity Post-Season Pujols
When ranking players in professional sports, winning is more important in some sports than others. In football, it seems to be very important. While, in baseball, a player like Mike Trout practically wouldn’t even make the playoffs, but if you have the eyeballs, you know he’s one of the best players that ever played in the game.
But in this case, you have a player who is one of the greatest players who have starred on the biggest stages. Pujols made the playoffs nine times in his career. During the postseason, Albert Pujols had a hit average of 321 with 95 hits, 19 home runs, 54 RBI and 57 points in 86 postseason games in his career.
He helped propel the St. Louis Cardinals to two world titles. In 2006 and 2011 the cards won it all, and Pujols was the main reason for that.
The 2006 team has practically no commercial profit. They finished the regular season 83-81 but the Pujols went on a mission that Postseason and St. Louis shocked the baseball world. In 2011, they were just a great baseball team led by the Pujols. He also led the Cardinals to the World Championships in 2004, but they hit the sawmill of the Boston Red Sox and the team that broke the curse.
Over the past few weeks, the Cardinals’ offense has fallen steadily. Nolan Arenado and Paul Goldschmidt both caught a cold. The only player to keep his pulse in the squad, you guessed it, is 42-year-old Albert Pujols.
When your teammates praise you 👏
What Albert Pujols does is amazing and it was a plus for @basics 😏
– Sporting News MLB (@sn_mlb) September 19, 2022
It would be a bit unfortunate if Pujols fell 700 times out of his career. He has already announced that he will retire at the end of the season. Then again, 700 is an arbitrary number if you really think about it. There is no denying that he is not only one of the greatest right-handed hitters in history, but one of the greatest.