Albert Pujols named MLB athlete of the decade

Millz

LGB
Staff member
V.I.P.
#1
My first reaction was, "duh," but I am a bit biased...

Our choices for seven athletes of the decade-one in each sport we cover--sparked some intense debate. In the baseball category, there wasn't much discussion: Albert Pujols easily got the nod over Alex Rodriguez.
We say...

No muss, no fuss, no drama—and no longer much debate about who is the best player in baseball. For much of the decade, the debate focused on Rodriguez and Barry Bonds. But in nine seasons, Pujols has never not surpassed a .300 average, 30 home runs and 100 RBIs. Those Hall of Fame numbers (by age 29) define him only slightly more than his all-around pursuit of excellence.
The numbers say...

Through Sept. 22:
Pujols: 366 home runs, 1,106 RBIs, 59 stolen bases, .334/.428/.630, two MVPs, one title
Rodriguez: 432 home runs, 1,232 RBIs, 176 stolen bases, .304/.401/.586, three MVPs, no titles
You say...

SportingNews.com voting
Pujols 82%
Rodriguez 18%
They say...

Hall of Famer and former Cardinals outfielder Lou Brock's case for Pujols: "There's an adage in baseball that the sound of the bat dictates how well a guy is going to play. His first time in spring training, when Albert hit a ball, everyone stopped. All eyes turned to him. That sound just jerked you around. That in itself gave us a great indication of what was going to happen. The sound is hard to explain. It's just different—like I hear people talk about when Tiger Woods hits a golf ball and it's unlike anything they've heard. Babe Ruth, I'm told, had that sound. You don't hear that sound in every decade."
Pujols says...


Our pick's memory of the decade: "Nothing was more special than winning the World Series (in 2006). Seeing Adam Wainwright strike out Brandon Inge to make the last out was one of those moments I will never forget. I have had some big games, but nothing was more important than that game. We played as a team that whole series and proved all the people wrong who did not think we had the team to win."
Nobody has had a better start to a career then Albert Pujols....

This is only just the beginning folks. Having the pleasure to watch the best player in baseball play day in and day out has been so awesome.
 
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CaptainObvious

Son of Liberty
V.I.P.
#2
I love Pujols and think he's the best player in the Major League and is deserving of athlete of the decade. He is nothing short of phenominal.
 

Babe_Ruth

Sultan of Swat
Staff member
V.I.P.
#3
Doesn't surprise me that Pujols was named the best player in the last decade.

But again Millz I think it's debatable if he had the best start of a MLB career, you can make an argument for Teddy Ballgame in my opinion. Ruth as well if he wasn't a pitcher for his first few seasons.
 

Wade8813

Registered Member
#4
I'd say Albert deserves it, but I don't think it's a "duh" situation.

A-Rod played a MUCH more valuable position than Pujols (and then was forced into a lesser, but still more valuable position). Pujols does have a bit better hitting numbers, but it's the steroids that put Pujols over the top.

Bonds raises an interesting question. Pujols is better if you choose to look at the years 2000-2009. But if you had chosen to look at any other set of 10 years, Bonds would have a much better argument. It seems unfair that Pujols' years started right at the beginning of the decade, but Bonds' best years don't line up so conveniently.


BTW - I think Ted Williams' start of career > Pujols (I don't think it's fair to ignore Ruth's years as a pitcher).
 

Babe_Ruth

Sultan of Swat
Staff member
V.I.P.
#5
I totally agree with you on the defensive side of the ball Wade, not taking anything away from Pujols defensively but playing Shortstop and Third Base is much easier then first base. But now that we know he took steroids he doesn't deserve to be known as the best.

Also Wade I'm not taking anything away from Ruth's years as a pitcher, it's just hard to judge the start of his career because he was a pitcher and a outfielder as well.
 

Wade8813

Registered Member
#6
but playing Shortstop and Third Base is much easier then first base.
You mean harder, right? ;)
Also Wade I'm not taking anything away from Ruth's years as a pitcher, it's just hard to judge the start of his career because he was a pitcher and a outfielder as well.
I agree, it's hard to judge, and he was a very good pitcher, and it's probable that he would have been almost as dominating as a batter if that's all he did. But since we're looking at how he actually started his career, and not what he might have done, I'm not sure I can rate him as getting off to as good of a start as Pujols.

His first year, he didn't play much, but was pretty bad. His second year he was a fairly good pitcher. He was a very good hitter, but only had 92 AB. The year after that, his hitting was down, but he was a dominant pitcher. In his 4th year, he was a very good but not amazing pitcher. His hitting was back up, but again, he had limited times at the plate. Pujols got off to a better start than that.