Albert Pujols Passes Willie Mays in Home Runs, if Not Dominance

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However, first, you will need to sum up simply how unbelievable his profession has been.

A simple solution to perceive Pujols’s large affect is to have a look at the place he stands amongst his contemporaries. He leads all energetic gamers in video games, plate appearances, at-bats, runs, hits, doubles, dwelling runs, runs batted in, walks, complete bases, sacrifice flies and intentional walks.

He received three Most Precious Participant Awards, was the most effective participant on two World Collection-winning groups, and is one in every of simply 20 place gamers in baseball’s fashionable period to build up 100 wins above replacement, or WAR. Earlier this season, he handed Alex Rodriguez for third place on the profession R.B.I. record, along with his 2,097 coming into Friday trailing solely Hank Aaron (2,297) and Babe Ruth (2,214).

He’s one in every of simply 4 gamers — Aaron, Rodriguez and Mays are the others — to have 3,000 hits and 600 dwelling runs. By Jay Jaffe’s career-evaluation instrument, JAWS, which makes an attempt to account for a participant’s peak along with his complete output, Pujols’s unbelievable stretch from 2003 to 2009 pushes him previous the Corridor of Famer Jimmie Foxx, making him the second-best first baseman in baseball historical past, trailing solely Lou Gehrig.

In different phrases, there isn’t any method to have a look at Pujols’s profession and never conclude that he’s a first-ballot Corridor of Famer.

However when you simply take a look at his totals, and his outrageous peak, you miss a steep and extended decline, one which primarily cleaves his profession into two distinct chapters: dwelling baseball god for the St. Louis Cardinals and one thing far lower than that for the Angels. His on-field deterioration during the last 9 seasons has been a bit extra stark alongside Trout, who many really feel has an opportunity to finally be thought-about Mays’s true successor as the sport’s biggest all-around participant.

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