Pujols Officially 2nd on Career RBI List

In the 5th inning last night, Albert Pujols lined a single to left field to score Mike Trout.  It was RBI number 2087 for him.  The moved him out of a tie with Alex Rodriguez and officially into second by himself on the career RBI leader board.  I say officially because in reality Babe Ruth should be in second with 2214 RBI…except RBI was not an official stat until 1920, so 224 of his don’t technically count.  The record belongs to Hank Aaron with 2297.

We all know RBI depends on previous batters getting on base in order to be batted in and thus the stat does not reflect solely the skill of the batter.  However, 2087 is. a. lot.
I wrote in a comment just yesterday that Pujols should retire.  I stand by that.  He’s been a replacement-level player for 3-4 years now.  That, though, should in no way detract from his inner-circle Hall of Fame career.  So, congratulations to him, and let’s enjoy the milestones he achieves in the twilight of his time as a player.

Next up:  he’s at 659 homers, one shy of tying Willie Freakin’ Mays.

Just to pound it home once more, this is a guy whose career achievements are putting him in company with Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, and Babe Ruth.  What a privilege it has been to have been able to watch him play.

4 thoughts on “Pujols Officially 2nd on Career RBI List

    1. It is a bad contract, and was such when it was signed. He was also grossly underpaid with the Cards. That’s the way it is in baseball economics, though, for the big stars. Everyone is under team control the first six years. Many sign an extension for the security, but that also saves the team money. Then, when the player does hit free agency, stars often get signed for more money than they are really going to be worth in their decline years. I’ll leave my opinions of the sanity of the system for another day.
      For $300M, the Angels got 5 years of a good, no longer great, player and 4 of a replacement -level player…with one more to go…and a 10 year personal services agreement. Expect to see lots of Pujols personal appearances for the Angels.
      Again, he really should retire, but with one year an $30M left on the table, I will not begrudge him coming back for the retirement tour/swan song season next year.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Interestingly (at least to me), Baseball Reference does list Ruth 2nd all time with 2,214 RBIs (or RsBI if you’re so inclined).

    I think it would be cool for Albert to hit 1 more HR and announce his retirement immediately after the game. It will be a long, long, long time before anyone gets close to passing him & Willie. The next closest active player is Miguel Cabrera with 481. Other active players of note: Edwin Encarnacion – 418, Nelson Cruz – 412, Ryan Braun – 345. Outside chances to get to 660: Giancarlo Stanton – 311 (age 30, can he stay healthy?), Mike Trout – 295 (age 28), Nolan Arenado – 234 (age 29, 40 /yr for 10 yrs if he stays in Coors Field?)

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Good points by Raysfan1, Gary, and Spartan.

    Pujols gave up the chance to be the best Cardinal ever (which is a profoundly impressive statistic). He turned down (and was insulted by the offer), if I recall, 200 million, and came to Anaheim (of LA). His career here fell off the cliff, which was expected, but even naysayers of his contract (like me, in this forum) thought the edge of that cliff was four or five years away. Instead, his first season in Anaheim saw the lowest OPS+ and WAR of his career, and also the highest of his career here.

    Pujols did not study the new baseball math and determined to concentrate on counting stats. With Trout ahead of him, Albert, batting fourth, continued to accumulate RBI but at the expense of career average, OBP, SLG, and OPS+. Angels broadcasters have expressed stats on a career basis almost from his arrival. It’s much more impressive to say “Albert is now 11th in career homers” than it is to say “Albert is 11th in homers this year.”

    After decades of ownership by The Cowboy, in which the Angels made the worst free agent acquisitions and let Nolan Ryan walk (The Angels GM said he would replace Ryan with two 8-7 pitchers. Ryan’s last year he was 16-14, 5 shutouts, led the league in SO/9. The washed-up Ryan added 157 wins and 2815 SO to his career counts after leaving the Angels.) After a brief ownership by Disney, The Billboard Salesman (so nicknamed by T.J Simers, LA Times) took over and the team won the World Series. A few years later, as the Angels started to slip into also-ran status, Arte took matters into his own hands and personally pursued and signed Pujols and Josh Hamilton, giving the pair all the money and relegating the rest of the team to league minimum pay. Hamilton was given away for nothing. As Pujols nears the end of his career, a $29 million contract for this year and a million-dollar raise for next, Mike Trout takes over as the owner of a huge percentage of the Angel’s budget. And so it goes…

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