As the Inquisitr previously noted, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim first baseman Albert Pujols is slated to start the Midsummer Classic on July 14 at Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati in place of the injured Miguel Cabrera.
Today, Pujols announced that he will participate in the fourth Home Run Derby of his career, having lost in the semifinal round in 2003, 2007, and 2009, according to ESPN.
On the year, Albert has launched 25 homers, good enough for first in the American League, and tied for second in all of baseball. During his 15 years of service in the Major Leagues between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Angels, Pujols has jacked 546 home runs, putting him in 16th place on the all-time list, per Baseball Reference.
Albert Pujols says he will compete in All-Star Home Run Derby. It will be Pujols’ 4th time in event. pic.twitter.com/2KveQN2UYj
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 7, 2015
Albert was very excited to be selected, and had this to say in the aftermath.
“I’m going to give it one last chance. The good thing with Major League Baseball is they allow us to bring our kids onto the field on practice day so they’ll be able to enjoy that. They’ll have a great time and meet the players they get to watch every day.”
Apparently, Pujols was pressured by his son Albert Jr. to join the competition, adding, “He was pretty pumped up because he gets on the field.”
With the rules changing for this year’s derby, where players will receive five full minutes to hit as many long balls as possible, Albert had this to say.
“If anything it’ll be better because you don’t have to sit around so much like you did in the past. If I hit in the first round we had to wait until everybody hit and sometimes you sat an hour and a half, two hours.”
With at least two homers that go beyond 420 feet, the batter can earn an extra minute during his time at the plate. Thirty additional seconds will be added for any home run that goes over 475 feet.
Here are some reactions from Twitter.
— Jason Bobb (@jasonbobb) July 8, 2015
#Angels 1B Albert Pujols has 546 career HRs, two shy of Mike Schmidt for 15th place on all-time list. Needs 1 XBH to tie Ty Cobb for 12th.
— Mike DiGiovanna (@MikeDiGiovanna) July 8, 2015
Albert Pujols with some Home Run Derby practice at Coors Field. Three-run shot to left-center field in the first, his AL-leading 26th.
— Alden Gonzalez (@Alden_Gonzalez) July 8, 2015
— #FinalVote (@MLB) July 7, 2015
[Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images]