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Albert Pujols Rapidly Nears Competence For Los Angeles Angels

With his home run Tuesday night Albert Pujols is now hitting .273/.327/.500 since his OPS bottomed—presumably—at .505 on May 11. That is not especially great; it's the kind of numbers you'd give Russell Branyan $400,000 to hack toward. But they're competent-Major-League-first-baseman numbers, so if you were really assuming (or maybe hoping) that Albert Pujols was now the worst player in Major League Baseball, this might be the moment in which he begins digging his way up toward replacement level from the coffin in which he's buried himself over two months with the Los Angeles Angels.

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The most calming part of those numbers, for Angels fans, might be the four walks he's generated in 49 plate appearances; over the 130 plate appearances before that bottom (yes, I'll call it) he'd walked unintentionally... four times. He also picked up his first "I'm Albert Pujols and I'm invisible on the bases" steal of the season over this stretch.

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For all this, he's got some work to do; if he had a really nice Tyler Greene night—3-4, 1 2B, 1 HR—he'd still be hitting .225 and slugging .365.

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