scheduled tribe. LOUIS—Albert Pujols rewarded an enthusiastic crowd by hitting a home run on his return to Busch Stadium, giving the Los Angeles Dodgers a 7–2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on September 7.
Justin Turner made home twice and Will Smith also made home for playoff contenders the Dodgers, who won for the sixth time in eight games. St. Louis has lost four in a row.
A star slugger who led the Cardinals to a pair of World Series championships, 41-year-old Pujols made his second appearance at Busch Stadium after playing for St. Louis from 2001–2011.
Pujols drew a 40-second standing ovation when his name was announced before batting in the first innings, as catcher and longtime teammate Yadier Molina stepped in front of the plate to extend the cheer. He had a short hug before Pujols arrived.
Pujols immediately drilled J.A. Happ’s fourth pitch on a line over the wall on the left. It was his 679th career home run and 17th run of the season.
“It’s one of those things you hope might happen,” said Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts. “But the chances are very unlikely. Getting a standing ovation and then homering at that first bat. Storybook. I’m sure the game honors you. Just the way Albert played the game for so long.” Kind, the way it was supposed to go.”
Pujols tried to downplay the moment.
“When it happens, you let it happen,” he said. “It’s part of the game. Embrace the moment. But try not to get too bogged down.”
His teammates had no problem enjoying this special moment.
“It was so surreal,” Turner said. “Great to everyone in the stadium—not just Albert. Every time he kills Homer, you’re watching history.”
The 10-time All-Star received a similar fan response when he returned to St. Louis with the Los Angeles Angels for the first time in 2019, giving him a standing ovation in all 12 plate appearances of the series, including a one-minute tribute. On his first trip to the plate. He also homed in the first game of that series.
Pujols, who did not play in the series opener on Monday night, went 1 for 4. The first baseman signed a 10-year deal with the Angels after the 2011 season, then joined the Dodgers last May.
Alex Vescia (3–1) won for Los Angeles, using nine pitchers. He dismissed the only man he faced to end the third innings. Corey Nebel started and played an innings as an opener.
Turner scored the 12th multihomer game of his career and the second record of the season.
Turner said, ‘It was good to hit a few balls hard. “I’m putting in some work. It’s good to get results.”
Happ (8-8) conceded four runs in seven hits in five innings.
Turner took the lead in the fifth inning to take a 4–2 lead. Smith, who scored 4 for 4, added his 23rd home run in the sixth. Turner made his ninth and 23rd shot of the year with a two-run shot to extend the lead to 7-2.
Tyler O’Neill had three hits for St. Louis, which came into play while chasing San Diego for a second NL wild-card spot.
O’Neill said, ‘We have to play better ball. “To be more complete. We have to piece some stuff together.”
Dodgers leadoff man Tree Turner extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a double in the third inning. The best streak of his career was a 16-game run with Washington in 2020.
by Steve Overbe
This News Originally From – The Epoch Times