It's a safe bet to call Albert Pujols the best player in the game right now, right?
The guy that ESPN's Rob Neyer tabbed as the top player of the first decade of the new millennium has made history.
With one picture perfect swing of the bat, the first baseman extended his own Major League record by becoming the ONLY player in history to begin his career with ten straight seasons with 30 or more home runs when he went yard off of Ryan Dempster in the first inning of the St. Louis Cardinals 9-7 loss against the Chicago Cubs on Sunday.
And with a few more RBI (he's currently sitting at 86), he'll be the only cat to have started his career with ten straight seasons with 100 or more runs knocked in. Incidentally, he'll also become the only player to have ever belted 30 home runs and knocked in 100 in ten straight years ever.
“Prince Albert” started this year with 366 home runs and is currently sitting at 396. When he reaches 400, he’ll be the youngest National Leaguer to reach the milestone (the slugger turned 30 on back in January) and third youngest overall after Alex Rodriguez (who was a couple of months shy of his 30th birthday when he did the deed) and Ken Griffey, Jr.
Should the St. Louis Cardinals slugger continue on his home run pace and get to 40 home runs and 40 or more doubles this season (not as likely, given he is only at 26), it’ll be a record fourth time he achieved the feat.
Last season, he tied Lou Gehrig as the only player to have done it three times.
And should Pujols do all the above AND take home another National League MVP award, he’ll be only one of two players (Barry Bonds has seven) to be named his league’s best more than three times.
So answer this for me again...it’s safe to call Pujols the best in the game, right?
Last week, Hall readers were aked who they thought would be the next player to reach 600 career home runs. Did they say Pujols, Thome...or someone else?