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The average MLB fan may think there’s nothing left for Albert Pujols to do in terms of firsts.
He picked up his first career hit on April 2, 2001 – a single off Colorado Rockies pitcher Mike Hampton. He would hit his first career home run in a 3-for-5 night against the Arizona Diamondbacks on April 6, 2001 – off Armando Reynoso and later record his first double.
He already has more than 600 home runs and 3,300 hits. He made the All-Star Game 10 times and is a three-time National League MVP.
On Sunday night against the San Francisco Giants, he reminded fans there was at least one thing he hasn’t done – take the mound. In the middle of the St. Louis Cardinals’ blowout against the Giants, Pujols made the trip to the bump for the first time in his 22-year career.
He came out for the ninth inning as the Cardinals were up 15-2. He would allow two home runs in the frame before closing out the win for the Red Birds 15-6.
Giants third baseman Evan Longoria singled off Pujols with one out. He asked to keep the ball in what was sure to be a special moment for both veteran players.
Pujols’ top speed was a 69 mph slider to Thairo Estrada. Pujols got Estrada to ground into a fielder’s choice.
Journalist Sarah Langs noted Pujols was the second-oldest player to make their pitching debut.
Lena Blackburne did it at 42 years and 225 days old in 1929 for the Chicago White Sox. He allowed one hit in 1/3 of an inning.
Pujols was 42 years and 119 days old.