Albert Pujols has put together an illustrious MLB career that will one day land him in the Hall of Fame. As he nears the end of his 10-year, $240 million deal with the LA Angels, there is some intriguing dialogue sparking up around him. A former longtime MLB executive has levied some strong accusations toward him.
Albert Pujols sparked questions concerning his age
In the latter stages of Albert Pujols‘ MLB career, some questions have cropped up concerning his age.
Pujols sparked that discussion after some interesting comes he made during an interview on the Yahoo Sports podcast back in April 2018. In the interview, he was asked about his first-ever home run, which he referenced his age at 12 years old and stated that 28 years later, he was now in the majors.
“I actually hit it off Octavio Dotel, I think I told you that,” Pujols said. “I was about 12, 13, almost 13 years old.”
“And we go back, you know, 28 years later, and here I am.”
At the time of the interview, Pujols was only 38 years old, which his comments suggest he was either 40 or 41 years old. The conversation around his age lingered for a bit but faded into the backburners over the last few years.
However, the talk concerning his age has sparked up again after a longtime MLB executive made strong accusations toward the future Hall of Famer.
MLB executive believes Albert Pujols has lived a lie his entire MLB career
Albert Pujols is heading into the final year of his massive 10-year, $240 million contract with the LA Angels.
As he nears closer to the end of his deal, former longtime Miami Marlins president David Samson voiced during a recent interview with “The Dan Le Batard Show” that it’s no secret around the league Pujols is lying about his age.
“There is not one person in baseball, not one executive, who believes Albert Pujols is the age that he says he is,” Samson told Le Batard. “The amount of fraud that was going on in the Dominican back in the day, the changing of names, the changing of birthdays, it would blow your mind.”
Samson referenced that when the Marlins attempted to make a push to sign Pujols in 2011, they knew he wasn’t the age he stated. In the Dominican Republic, it’s become common ground to see players lie about their age to receive opportunities to play in the United States.
Miguel Tejada lied about being 17 when he was 19 years old to earn a contract with the Oakland Athletics in 1993. Meanwhile, Wandy Rodriguez took up the name Jose De Jesus Ortiz and lied about being 17 instead of 19 years old. He later changed his name back and had a 10-year MLB career.
Hal of Fame resume remains intact
The mystery around Albert Pujol’s age will remain, especially since he is from a country where prospective baseball players often went that route.
All that won’t change his reputation in MLB history as he’s one of the league’s greatest players. Although his tenure with the LA Angels hasn’t lived up to his $240 million contract, it’s a chapter of his career that has only added to his legacy.
His tenure with the St. Louis Cardinals established him as one of the game’s best offensive talents. During those 11 years, he earned nine of his 10 career All-Star selections, two World Series championships, three NL MVP awards, two Gold Gloves, and six Silver Slugger honors.
In his time with the Angels, he has continued to add historic feats to his resume. He’s joined the 3,000 hit club and became only the fourth player to reach that feat, along with hitting 600 home runs.
Pujols may not have achieved anywhere near the same level of success or individual production with the Angels, but it doesn’t diminish his legacy.