Albert Pujols became the 32nd player in MLB history to reach the 3,000 hit mark, as he knocked a soft line drive into right field against Mariners’ starting pitcher Mike Leake during his third at-bat of the game.In the ninth inning, Pujols would single again to pass Roberto Clemente on the all-time hits list, who sits at exactly 3,000.
“I was really excited, but at the same time you still have a game you need to play and you still need to focus to win that game,” Pujols said in a post-game interview. “That’s what I told those guys. Let’s go win that game so it can taste a little better.”
“It was fun that it turned into a little bit of a battle before he got a hit. Congratulations to him,” Leake said in a post-game interview. “He’s a competitor every second that he’s on the field. He’s been a joy to watch and a joy to compete against, for sure.”
What makes this achievement even more amazing for Pujols is the additional accolades that accommodate 3,000 hits itself.
Pujols became just the 4th player in MLB history to get 3,000 hits while accumulating 600 home runs, joining the likes of Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, and Alex Rodriguez.
He became the 4th consecutive player to reach 3,000 hits, as Rodriguez did so in 2015, Ichiro Suzuki joined the club in 2016, and Adrian Beltre accumulated his 3,000th hit in 2017.
Pujols also became just the 2nd Dominican-born player to ever reach 3,000 hits, with his long-term friend Adrian Beltre being the first to do so.
On top of all these additional accolades, Pujols put together one of the best 10-year stat accumulations ever seen in MLB. Batting .331, averaging 41 home runs, 123 RBI’s and 190 hits. Not to mention, his three MVP awards, and additional four seasons where he was runner up.
“I’m aware of the legacy and the people that I tie and am on the same page right now,” Pujols told ESPN. “But at the end of the day it’s about winning a championship. Nothing would be more special than in September and October and playing in the playoffs and bringing a championship back to the city of Anaheim.”
While the 38-year-old is sure to be a first-ballot Hall of Fame inductee, his focus is not on his personal achievements, but bringing home a championship to the City of Anaheim.
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