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Albert Pujols expressed his desire to retire alongside longtime St. Louis Cardinals teammate Yadier Molina.
Albert Pujols created quite the stir this spring after an Instagram post by his wife insinuated that he would be retiring at the end of the 2021 season. However, said post was amended later, clarifying that he was entering the final spring training as a contracted player for the Los Angeles Angels. Either way, Pujols’ career is nearing its end, whether it’s in 2021 or later.
During an interview with USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, Pujols said that if he were to retire, he would like to do so alongside former St. Louis Cardinals teammate and catcher Yadier Molina. That way, the two can enter the Hall of Fame at the same time.
Cardinals: Albert Pujols wants to enter the Hall of Fame alongside Yadier Molina
In this very same interview, Pujols declared Molina was the greatest catcher of his time and that he is absolutely deserving of being inducted into Cooperstown in the very near future.
Pujols and Molina spent the better part of eight years together in the Cardinals clubhouse. Molina made his debut in the 2004 season, when Pujols had three campaigns under his belt already. The two would win two World Series titles (2006, 2011). and three National League pennants (2004, 2006, 2011) and play on two All-Star Games together (2009-10).
After defeating the Texas Rangers in their tremendous 2011 World Series comeback, Pujols signed a 10-year, $240 million with the Angels. Pujols only made the postseason once with the Angels in 2014, but they were swept in the ALDS by the Kansas City Royals.
Meanwhile, Molina and the Cardinals reached the World Series again in 2013 in a loss to the Boston Red Sox and two more NLCS appearances in 2014 and 2019. This offseason, after receiving interest from a variety of teams, Molina signed a one-year, $9 million contract to remain with the Cardinals. 2021 stands as Molina’s last chance to contend for a World Series title after the team re-signed pitcher Adam Wainwright and traded for superstar third baseman Nolan Arenado.
Whenever Pujols decides to hang up his cleats for good, he hopes that Molina will do at the same time. Come on, you know it would be great to see the two enter the Hall of Fame at the exact same time.