Friday marked the return to St. Louis for the first time as an opposing player for Cardinals legend Albert Pujols, who has been with the Angels since the start of the 2012 season. He obviously got a long standing ovation in his first game back, and it happened again on Saturday.
Later in the game Saturday, with the Cardinals up 4-0 and no one on base, Pujols hit a home run, No. 646 in his career.
Note the circumstances, so it wasn’t too surprising to see the Cardinals fans go crazy for it in a positive way. You don’t often see a curtain call on the road, but this was a beautiful moment for the baseball world, specifically for St. Louis and Pujols.
This was the first home run in that ballpark from Pujols as an opposing player. He hit 110 there as a Cardinals player (94 in the previous iteration of Busch Stadium, too).
In his 11 seasons with the Cardinals, Pujols hit .328/.420/.617 (170 OPS+!) with 455 doubles, 445 homers, 1,329 RBI, 1,291 runs and 2,073 hits. He also won three MVPs and two World Series rings. He’ll be wearing a Cardinals cap in his Cooperstown bust when he’s enshrined into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Pujols’ wife, Deidre, called it “the most special thing” she’s seen in his whole career, which is chock full of special moments.
Though the Saturday in baseball is far from over, we’ve definitely already had our feel-good moment of the day.