No one in baseball could have predicted the immediate impact that Albert Pujols would have on the Dodgers. The clubhouse presence was the most obvious change, but Pujols also looks reinvented on the field.
Through 26 games with the Dodgers, Pujols is hitting .372 with 5 home runs and 13 runs driven in against left-handed pitching. That is exactly the kind of production the team was looking for when they signed him for the prorated league minimum.
So where did this resurrection come from by the 41-year-old slugger? Well, the answer could simply be the people around him. Pujols admitted on Monday afternoon that he’s having a lot of fun with the Dodgers. The most fun he’s had in a while.
This is the most fun that I’ve had in a while. I’m having a great time right now, enjoying every moment, And, I’m just glad every time I’m out there I can help this ballclub to win and that’s my goal. I really don’t think ahead and just really focus on the moment and I’m enjoying this moment right now.
Pujols would not say anything bad about his team in Anaheim and noted that he’s always having fun when he gets to play. But it’s no secret that things didn’t quite go the way he had hoped when he signed a massive deal with the Angels. But Albert is loving the people and mindset of the Dodgers players and organization.
I think just the chemistry, the opportunity, I think being around the veteran guys that have the same mindset that I have about winning and helping this organization. I think it’s just a great mix of guys. It reminds me of my times back in St. Louis. That’s how I felt as soon as I walked in the clubhouse from Day One. Just the vibe and the energy that were in the clubhouse.
It’s pretty easy to see that Albert is enjoying his time in Los Angeles. One look into the dugout will show that. Pujols is often seen talking to virtually every player on the team during games, often with a big smile on his face.
And who is the first guy they greet in the clubhouse after a big homerun? Albert. Whatever the Dodgers are doing, keep doing that.