Jose Alberto Pujols Alcantara was born on January 16 1980. He was born in the Dominican Republic and was raised there also. He was raised by his grandmother. At a young age he wanted to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a great baseball player like his father, he had a dream to play in the majors. In 1996 his family immigrated to New York City. Pujols attended Fort Osage High School as a sophomore. In his first year at Fort Osage his batting average was over . 500 and he hit 11 homeruns. He received All-State Honors.
In his junior year of High School with only playing one season of high school baseball he started to attract the attention of pro scouts. In his junior year other teams avoided pitching to him as much as they could. With 55 walks in 88 at bats he still hit 8 homeruns. Now the pro scouts advised him to leave High School and find a collage that could get him better exposure. Pujols played in the All-Star game for high schoolers there he drew the attention of Maple Woods Community Collage coach Marty Kilgore.
He recruited the 18-year-old star. His main priority was to increase his stock in the upcoming draft of 2000. In his first collage debut he did amazing things. He stared at short stop and batted . 461. He hit a grand slam in the regular season of future all-star Mark Buehrle. He also turned an unassisted triple play. The unassisted triple play is the rarest thing that can happen in baseball. The player turns a triple play by himself without the help of the other players. For his freshman year of collage he hit 22 homeruns and 80 RBI’s.
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During the Junior College World Series the scouting report on Albert Pujols said it was better to put him on base than to pitch to him. Even though they did not pitch to him anymore the Major league teams had seen enough. Among the teams watching him was the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cardinals had been watching the hard hitting infielder the closest out of all the teams. The Cardinals selected Pujols in the 13th Round of the draft. They offered him a 10,000 dollar bonus for signing but he turned it down and decided to play in the Jayhawks League.
There he joined the Hay Larks. It was 4 hours away from where he was living so he moved in with his manager and his wife. In 55 games he topped the Larks in homeruns and in batting average. At the end of the summer the Cardinals finally started to appreciate Pujols and offered him 60,000. He accepted. During the fall ball season he started to learn a new position, Third base. In the winter he returned to his home and married his wife Diadre. She already had a child named Isabella. After that moment they were never separated.
In 2000 he was assigned to the Peoria Chiefs a Class A League, his new wife and Isabella followed him. At the Chief he played as their Third baseman. He was named the circuit’s top defensive man at the hot corner, with the best infield arm. During that season there was seven no hitters thrown. Still even with that Pujols finished second in the league with a . 324 batting average, and added 32 doubles, 17 home runs and 84 RBI’s. He only struck out 37 times it under just 400 at bats. The Peoria Chiefs finished under . 500 but Pujols was named League MVP.
After that he made his way through the Cardinals farm league teams. He earned a promotion to the Potomac Cannons, then an affiliate of the Cardinals in the Carolina League. After a strong month by Pujols at the Double-A level the St. Louis brass wanted to see him against Triple-A talent. He was promoted again to the Memphis Redbirds, who were preparing for the Pacific Coast League playoffs. In seven games, Albert hit . 367 with two homeruns, as Memphis nipped the Albuquerque Dukes to advance to the PCL championship series.
The Redbirds faced the Salt Lake Buzz, a Minnesota Twins farm team and defeated them for the PCL crown. Albert was named the league’s postseason MVP. With injuries on the Cardinals they were able to keep Pujols. To his surprise he found himself on the line-up against the Colorado Rockies playing left field. At three at bats he managed to get one hit. The next game they were on the road. The Cards traveled to Arizona, where Pujols destroyed the Diamondbacks with a homerun, three doubles and eight RBI’s in three games.
Included in his offensive barrage was a ringing two-run double off Randy Johnson. In 2003 he injured his elbow, which enabled him to make long throws. He ended the season batting . 359 with 51 doubles, 43 homeruns and 124 RBI’s. He struck out just 65 times in close to 700 plate appearances. In 2005 he was put on the disabled list and missed 15 games. He started playing first base in the all-star game and has been playing first base for the Cards since then. His batting average is . 269 for this year and has hit 7 homeruns.
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