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Albert Pujols makes his Dodgers debut. ‘It was surreal’

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Pujols drove in a run in his first game with his new team

Arizona Diamondbacks v Los Angeles Dodgers
“I used to sit in that other dugout, over there.”
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Albert Pujols played his 2,887th major league game on Monday night, a number surpassed by only 15 players in MLB history. But it was his first as a Dodger.

“It was surreal,” manager Dave Roberts said. “I don’t use that word very often, but just playing against Albert, seeing him on the other side coaching and managing against him, to see him in our dugout was really surreal, but it fit and looked normal.”

“It was pretty awesome, man,” Pujols said. “Really high-pump energy from the fans, and I was really excited.”

It was also the first time Pujols wasn’t wearing uniform number five. Well, sort of. With Corey Seager having that number with the Dodgers, Pujols opted for number 55, putting the number five on his uniform twice.

“In the Bible, it’s the number of grace, so I feel double grace. That’s how I look at it,” Pujols said. “I talked to my family, and that was a number that they also agreed with me.”

Links

Juan Toribio at MLB.com explores how Pujols fits into the Dodgers plans.

Jay Jaffe at FanGraphs looked at the Pujols signing in the context of trying to construct a team of very good to great players who joined the Dodgers at or near the end of their careers.

Pujols needs to prove himself again, writes Bill Plaschke at the Los Angeles Times.

In acquiring Yoshi Tsutsugo from the Rays on Saturday, the Dodgers paid “a small amount of cash above the $430,000 prorated share of the major-league minimum salary,” while Tampa Bay is responsible for the remainder of his $5 million salary in 2021, writes Marc Topkin at the Tampa Bay Times.

Jomboy broke down Matt Beaty getting ejected on Sunday.

Dan Duffy used every game score and the full roster from the 2020 Dodgers season to create word art, capturing Julio Urías securing the final out of the World Series. Incredible: