Albert Pujols pursuit of 700 home runs: Cardinals star a surprise add to lineup after scheduled atlanta braves signed jersey rest day, insists 'I'm not chasing anything'

September 21, 2022 By David Suggs 0

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Albert Pujols' recent power surge has been one of the highlights of the 2022 MLB season. However, "The Machine" says that he isn't interested in chasing homer No. 700.

Meeting with reporters prior to S atlanta braves jersey plain t. Louis' clash with San Diego on Tuesday, Pujols, who many believed he was scheduled for a day off, was in the starting lineup. He insisted, though, that his focus was firmly helping deliver another championship to St. Louis. 

He also rebuffed suggestions that he was pushing to join Babe Ruth, Barry Bonds and Hank Aaron in the 700-homer club, saying that chasing stats has never been a part of his approach to the game, so why startMLB Toys now.

MORE: Albert Pujols home run tracker

Exactly tell me what am I chasing, Fran atlanta braves swanson jersey k? Because I'm not chasing anything, buddy. I mean, that's something that you guys are playing with it. I just, nTrevor Story Red Sox Jerseysever chased any numbers and I accomplished so much so 22 years later I'm definitely not going to chase anyMLB Pantsthing…

What I'm chasing, you know what, is another ring. That's what I'm chasing for the city of St. Louis and for our fans, and that's why I signed back for thExpress is year.

Prince Albert has been on an absolute tear during the second half of the season. He's posted a .307/.371/.677 slash line with 13 homers in 44 games since the end of the All-Star break. Pujols' impressive displays put him right on the brink of MLB history, something the league has quite clearly tried to capitalize on.

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MORE: Will Albert Pujols join baseball's exclusive 700 HR club?

For what it's worth, Cards manager Oliver Marmol has made it clear just how much he desires for Pujols to reach the vaunted No. 700.

“You should see my [direct messages] on Instagram; I’ve been called every name in the book by fans in the D.R. when I don’t have Albert in the lineup,” Marmol said earlier in the month, per's John Denton.

If Albert doesn’t get to 700, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to go back there.

Marmol's comments were humorous. But they are rooted in truth. Marmol has helped put Pujols on the path to 700, taking him in-and-out the lineup in an effort to preserve him through the grueling end-of-the-season slate. The result? Pujols gets to bat primarily against lefties, a disposition of hurler that Pujols has notoriously crushed throughout his 22-year career.

MORE: Albert Pujols' chase for 700 filled with important homers

The stats bear this out: Pujols is hitting an obscene .356/.408/.760 against left-h atlanta braves baseball shirt anded pitching this season. That's a 1.168 OPS, or nearly 40 points higher than Aaron Judge's total OPS on the season (1.120).

To his credit, Marmol seems insistent on getting Pujols on the field as much as possible in an effort to get him to 700.

“I’d want to see four [at-bats] a night, too. I get it, I completely get it,” Marmol said. “The balance is how do we get the best version of Albert? Is it playing him every day? Or is it not? What’s scarier for the opposition — me being able to pick my spots to use him bas atlanta braves red jersey ed on the best matchups and they don’t have an ansMLB Car Accessorieswer for it? Or them being able to match up with him based on him being in the [starting] lineup?"

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Pujols' was expected to take a day off on Tuesday. However, when the lineup card came out, his na atlanta braves hank aaron jersey me was included. He's batting sixth as the Cards' designated hitter.

The Cardinals have 14 games left this season. With a division lead of 8.5 games over the second-place Brewers, St. Louis is seven games away from clinching an NL Central crown.

Achieving the 700 home run mark would be a spectacular accomplishment for Pujols and many wouldn't fault him even if he was 'chasing.' 

He can rest when he's retired.