Albert Pujols 3,000 hits: Projecting the numbers he could reach by the time his career is over

Albert Pujols 3,000 hits: Projecting the numbers he could reach by the time his career is over

Future first-ballot Hall of Famer Albert Pujols is a freshly minted member of the 3,000 hits club. Since he's in the latter stages of his career -- and since he's already reached 600 home runs -- let's look ahead to what the remainder of his playing days might bring in terms of milestones. 

Pujols is of course in deep decline and is no longer a productive player. However, he's under contract through the 2021 season, and the Angels have shown no signs of reducing his role in response to dwindling production. That means he's in good position to continue compiling counting stats over the next three-and-a-half seasons or so. So where might Pujols, one of the best right-handed hitters ever, wind up on those all-time ledgers? Let's explore that very matter in somewhat quick-and-dirty fashion. 

To do this, we'll use Steamer's rest-of-season forecast available at FanGraphs to get an idea of his final 2018 totals. Then we'll flesh it out by using Baseball Prospectus' long-term projections (subscription required and recommended) to cover the remainder of his current contract. Thus, our assumption is that Pujols plays out his Angels contract and retires following the 2021 season at the age of 41. 

Here the projected career totals that come out of the wash ... 

As you can, those are some inner-circle tallies right there. For the sake of the present thought experiment, let's say that's where he winds up on all counts. If that's the case, then ... 

  • Pujols will be 10th on the all-time hits list, just behind Carl Yastrzemski and just ahead of Paul Molitor.
  • He'll be fifth on the all-time home runs list, just behind Alex Rodriguez and just ahead of Willie Mays. 
  • He'll be fifth on the all-time doubles list, just behind Ty Cobb and just ahead of Craig Biggio. 
  • He'll be third on the all-time total bases list, just behind Stan Musial and just ahead of Mays. 
  • He'll be third on the all-time extra-base hits list, just behind Barry Bonds and just ahead of Musial. 
  • He'll be 30th on the all-time walks list, just behind Dwight Evans and just ahead of Tris Speaker. 
  • He'll be third on the all-time RBI list, just behind Babe Ruth and just ahead of A-Rod. 
  • He'll be 11th on the all-time runs list, just behind Musial and just ahead of Derek Jeter. 

If you're looking for one to sum it all up, Pujols is on pace to join Hank Aaron as the lone players to rack up at least 3,000 hits; 600 home runs; 600 doubles; and 2,000 RBI. With a healthy RBI pace, that could happen late in the current season, and of course if Pujols slightly bests his home run projections, then you can bump up that baseline to 700 homers instead of 600. Either way, we're talking about one of the very best hitters in the annals of the game. 


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Publish date : 2018-05-05 04:08:00
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