The game would spit out its famous line “HE’S HEATING UP!!!”
Well, somewhat quietly, Albert Pujols has begun to (if not already has) put the opening slump of his 2011 season behind him starting, and coupled, with the offensive outburst the Cardinals had in Arizona.
Let’s take a look at Albert’s game log for 2011, and see if you can see the difference of late:
|Apr 20 (1)||STL||WSN||4||1||2||0||1||2||1||0||0||0||.254||.308||.479||.787|
|Apr 20 (2)||STL||WSN||3||1||0||0||0||0||1||1||0||0||.243||.305||.459||.764|
More specifically, Pujols’ first nine games (from the San Diego through the San Francisco series) resulted in a un-Pujols-like slash line of .143/.225/.229 – including hitting into six double-plays.
The last nine games for Pujols (the Arizona series through yesterday’s double-dip with Washington)? A decidedly more-Pujols-like .333/.381/.667 – including four home runs and only one double-play.
It seems safe to assume that it’s no coincidence then that the Cards were 3-6 in those first nine games and 6-3 since. This team runs on Pujols.
He’s taken a walk today and grounded into a double-play that was really a nifty play by Ian Desmond to get it started, but suffice it to say, worries about Pujols at the plate have quickly faded into the background of boos directed at Ryan Franklin (dangit, I just couldn’t let it go).