Pujols is only the third player in Major League Baseball history to drive in 2,000 or more runs in a career, joining Alex Rodriguez (2,086) and Hank Aaron (2,297) in achieving the feat.
Pujols belted a fastball from Tigers left-hander Ryan Carpenter into the right-field seats during the Angels’ 13-0 victory. He received an ovation by the sparse crowd at Comerica Park, where his accomplishment was recognized on the videoboards and by the public address announcer.
“He’s one of the greatest hitters ever to walk the planet, without question,” Angels manager Brad Ausmus said recently. “For about 10 years, he was the best. He was the Mike Trout of his time. Really, it went from Pujols to [Miguel] Cabrera to Trout, but Albert’s body of work is clearly the best.”
RBIs became an official statistic in 1920. Prior to that, it is likely that Babe Ruth and Cap Anson also had 2,000 RBIs, but their exact totals are disputed.
The fan who caught Pujols’ home run ball said he wasn’t opposed to giving it back to Pujols, but he decided to keep it. The Tigers announced the ball can’t be authenticated by Major League Baseball.
Pujols told reporters he wasn’t upset that the fan kept the ball.
“He can keep it,” Pujols said. “It’s a great memory for him. I mean we play this game for the fans, and it’s a piece of history that he’s going to have for the rest of his life.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.