Albert Pujols signs 10-year, $254 million contract with Angels

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Last night the buzz coming from the winter meetings was that Albert Pujols wasn’t anywhere near making a decision, but either that was wrong or things changed dramatically overnight.

Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports reports that Pujols has agreed to sign with the Angels, getting a 10-year contract worth between $250 million and $260 million.

Wow. It didn’t take Jerry Dipoto long to make a huge splash as general manager.

Until now Alex Rodriguez was the only player in baseball history to secure a contract in excess of $200 million and according to Brown the massive deal also includes a full no-trade clause, which was something the Marlins reportedly were never willing to give Pujols.

Making that sort of investment in a 32-year-old first baseman is obviously tremendously risky and it’s tough to blame the Cardinals for not wanting to commit $25 million per season through age 41, but certainly Angels fans aren’t focusing on 2021 right now.

UPDATE: And the Angels weren’t done spending with Pujols, handing out another huge contract to C.J. Wilson.

UPDATE: The final tally on Pujols’ deal is $254 million and apparently that wasn’t even the highest offer.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with left ankle injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.