St. Louis Cardinals legends Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina got a standing ovation at the Blues game earlier this week.
Albert Pujols is back with the St. Louis Cardinals and, if all goes according to plan, he and longtime friends and teammates Yadier Molina and Adam Wainwright will retire together. It’s the most baseball story you will ever hear and a fitting end to three legendary careers.
The fans of St. Louis know exactly how much it means too. And when Pujols and Molina showed up at a Blues game, starting with a hype video on the scoreboard before being introduced individually, the fans went absolutely bonkers.
Molina got a loud ovation. When Pujols was announced, the crowd noise was deafening, and the entire stadium got off their feet to cheer him on. That, right there, is extremely cool and also another reason why Pujols wanted to come back to the Cardinals. He’s beloved in this city. He is very close with Molina, Wainwright and will have one more chance at a World Series with such a deep, stacked roster.
But the Cardinals did not sign Pujols because of nostalgia. They firmly believe that he can help them win baseball games, especially against left-handed pitching (he thrives against lefties), and is someone who can either start games or come off the bench late in games for at-bats in crucial situations.
It’s a luxury that was afforded to the Cardinals when MLB implemented the universal designated hitter. Had the rule not been implemented, Pujols would be playing elsewhere. He may have even been forced to retire. But the stars aligned for Pujols to come back to St. Louis for one last season and gives him one more chance to eclipse 700 home runs (he’s 21 shy).
There will be many reasons to celebrate and honor Pujols being back in St. Louis this season. The first was him signing with the Cardinals. Now, it’s honoring him at a Blues game, and the celebrations will only get better – and louder – from here, and it’s only fitting for a surefire Hall of Famer.