Albert Pujols becomes sixth player to hit 200 homers with two teams

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Power may have been restored at Tropicana Field in more ways than one on Thursday evening. Shortly after the lights went back on, Angels first baseman Albert Pujols mashed a no-doubt two-run home run to left field off of Rays starter Ryan Yarbrough, boosting the Angels’ lead to 3-0.

The homer marked the 200th for Pujols as a member of the Angels. He hit 445 with the Cardinals. According to STATS LLC, he is the sixth player to hit at least 200 homers with two different teams. The others:

  • Jimmie Foxx: Philadelphia Athletics (302), Red Sox (222)
  • Mark McGwire: Oakland Athletics (363), Cardinals (220)
  • Rafael Palmeiro: Rangers (321), Orioles (223)
  • Ken Griffey Jr.: Mariners (417), Reds (210)
  • Manny Ramírez: Red Sox (274), Indians (236)

Pujols entered Thursday’s action batting .236/.313/.448 with 11 home runs and 35 RBI across 230 plate appearances. Adjusting his OPS for league and park factors, 2019 is shaping up to be his most productive season since 2016. He has a 102 OPS+ compared to 91 last year, 80 in 2017, and 113 in 2016.

A future first-ballot Hall of Famer, Pujols currently sits sixth on Major League Baseball’s all-time home run leaderboard at 645. Assuming he stays healthy, he could surpass Willie Mays (660) this season to move into fifth place.

Free agent slugger José Abreu signs 3-year, $58.5M deal with Astros

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
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HOUSTON — Jose Abreu and the World Series champion Astros agreed to a three-year, $58.5 million contract, adding another powerful bat to Houston’s lineup.

Abreu, the 2020 AL MVP, gets $19.5 million in each of the next three seasons.

He spent his first nine major league seasons with the Chicago White Sox. The first baseman became a free agent after batting .304 with 15 home runs, 75 RBIs and an .824 OPS this year.

With the Astros, he replaces Yuli Gurriel at first base in a batting order that also features All-Star sluggers Yordan Alvarez, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker.

Gurriel became a free agent after Houston defeated the Philadelphia Phillies this month for its second World Series championship.

The 35-year-old Abreu becomes the biggest free agent to switch teams so far this offseason. Born in Cuba, the three-time All-Star and 2014 AL Rookie of the Year is a .292 career hitter in the majors with 243 homers, 863 RBIs and an .860 OPS.

The Astros announced the signing. Abreu was scheduled to be introduced in a news conference at Minute Maid Park.

He would get a $200,000 for winning an MVP award, $175,000 for finishing second in the voting, $150,000 for third, $125,000 for fourth and $100,000 for fifth. Abreu also would get $100,000 for earning World Series MVP and $75,000 for League Championship Series MVP, $75,000 for making the All-Star team and $75,000 for winning a Gold Glove or a Silver Slugger.

Abreu gets a hotel suite on road trips and the right to buy a luxury suite for all Astros home games.