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Albert Pujols

SPORTS
March 7, 2014 | By Houston Mitchell
Most baseball fans would say that Mike Trout is the best player in baseball today. And if they don't list him at No. 1, they would certainly have him in the top five. The Angels outfielder has arguably had the best first two seasons in baseball history. But he's not Albert Pujols. So, please don't ask Pujols if he is motivated to put up the same numbers as Mike Trout, as he was in spring training. “Can you imagine someone saying that to me?” Pujols told USA Today Sports.
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SPORTS
March 2, 2014 | By Bill Shaikin
TEMPE, Ariz. -- The Angels might be all about Mike Trout this and Mike Trout that, but Albert Pujols scoffed at the suggestion that he might be motivated by all that Trout has accomplished. "I don't need to compare with anybody, buddy," Pujols said Sunday. "Just look at my numbers. My job is to stay healthy and go out there and play. I don't need anybody to motivate me to play this game. " The Angels plan to bat Trout second and Pujols third, the keys to an offense that could be formidable if Pujols resembles his St. Louis self.
SPORTS
March 1, 2014 | Bill Shaikin
The Angels hope for great things from David Freese, their new third baseman. What they cannot hope for are the best days of Freese's baseball life. He already had them. In 2011, he saved the St. Louis Cardinals from extinction in Game 6 of the World Series, tying the score in the ninth inning with a two-out, two-run triple, then winning the game with an 11th-inning home run. In Game 7, he tied the score with a two-run double, and the Cardinals never again trailed. St. Louis threw a parade for its Cardinals, but the outpouring of elation was most heartfelt toward Freese.
SPORTS
March 1, 2014 | By Bill Shaikin
TEMPE, Ariz.  - Albert Pujols plays for the Angels, and so does Josh Hamilton. Total rebuilding is not an option. It could have been. The Angels' minor league system generally ranks as the worst in the business. The major league team has not reached the playoffs in four consecutive years. The Angels are coming off their worst season in a decade, even with the emergence of baseball's best player, Mike Trout. As the Angels stumbled through the waning days of their lost summer, Jerry Dipoto had absolutely no idea whether he would keep his job. The second-year general manager started preparations for the 2014 season entirely unsure whether he would have the chance to implement them.
SPORTS
February 26, 2014 | By Bill Shaikin
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Mike Trout wore a million-dollar smile Wednesday. It was a good day for him and the Angels, with the anticipation of a much better day in the very near future. The Angels signed Trout to a one-year, $1-million contract, avoiding the rancor of the renewal process and setting the stage for agreement on a long-term extension. Trout's salary is the highest for a one-year deal with a player not yet eligible for salary arbitration. The previous record of $900,000 was shared by Albert Pujols (2003)
SPORTS
February 26, 2014 | By Bill Shaikin
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Mike Trout has yet to play a game this season but already has broken a record. The Angels signed Trout to a one-year, $1-million contract on Wednesday, the highest salary ever for a one-year deal with a player not yet eligible for salary arbitration. The previous record of $900,000 was shared by Albert Pujols (2003) and Ryan Howard (2007). Angels General Manager Jerry Dipoto called the deal a "landmark. " "I think it's fitting," Dipoto said. "I think Mike has earned it. We're glad to provide it. He's an extraordinary player.
SPORTS
February 21, 2014 | By Mike DiGiovanna
TEMPE, Ariz. - It's far too early to determine how Albert Pujols will rebound from a subpar season that was cut short by a left-foot injury, but early returns on the slugger are encouraging. "I feel awesome," said Pujols, who had right-knee surgery after 2012 and suffered a partial tear of the plantar fascia in his left foot last July. "To be able to do things with no pain or discomfort, to have my legs underneath me, to move around and have the load I want in my swing … that's the biggest difference.
SPORTS
February 13, 2014 | By Mike DiGiovanna
TEMPE, Ariz. - Albert Pujols reported to spring training along with Angels pitchers and catchers Thursday, and his mood seemed to mirror his health. The left-heel injury that hobbled him for four months last season before giving out in late July is fully healed. The surgically repaired right knee that flared up several times in 2013 is sound. Pujols is seven pounds lighter than he was last September, his 6-foot-3, 236-pound frame lean and chiseled from a winter of workouts. And while he will never be compared to Mike Trout on the basepaths, Pujols is feeling as frisky as the 22-year-old speedster.
SPORTS
February 12, 2014 | By Mike DiGiovanna
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Doomed from the start. No phrase better captures the last two playoff-free seasons for the Angels, who were 18-25 and eight games back in the American League West by mid-May 2012 and 15-27 and 12 games back by mid-May 2013. After lavishing $240 million on Albert Pujols before 2012 and $125 million on Josh Hamilton before 2013, the Angels spent modestly this off-season, their only free-agent splurge on reliever Joe Smith for three years and $15.75 million. Expectations are lower for 2014 - most projections have the Angels finishing third in the division - but if they are to contend, they must hit stride opening day, a mission they hope to accomplish by infusing spring training with a keener focus and greater sense of urgency.
SPORTS
February 10, 2014 | By Mike DiGiovanna
A potentially nasty legal battle between Angels slugger Albert Pujols and former St. Louis Cardinals slugger Jack Clark was avoided Monday when Clark issued a public apology for last summer's comments accusing Pujols of using performance-enhancing drugs. Pujols, in turn, said he would drop the defamation lawsuit he filed in St. Louis County in October that accused Clark of disseminating “malicious, reckless and outrageous falsehoods” about him in an attempt to “generate attention and ratings” for Clark's new sports-radio talk show.
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