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Pujols named Sporting News' Player of the Decade

Sep 24, 2009, 10:20 AM EDT

It’s hard to argue with this:

No muss, no fuss, no drama–and no longer much debate about who is the best player in baseball. For much of the decade, the debate focused on Rodriguez and Barry Bonds. But in nine seasons, Pujols has never not surpassed a .300 average, 30 home runs and 100 RBIs. Those Hall of Fame numbers (by age 29) define him only slightly more than his all-around pursuit of excellence.

A-Rod was a distant second.  He had better counting stats than did Pujols, but if you adjust for the fact that he has played the entire decade while Albert didn’t debut until 2001, those differences become minimal.  Pujols kills A-Rod on the rate stats. He also has a ring. He also isn’t loathed in the way that Rodriguez is loathed by so many, though I don’t think that entered into SN’s decision.  Really, the only way Rodriguez would have had an argument would be if he had stayed at short and continued to play good defense there, but that obviously didn’t happen.

Sad that this was such a no-brainer. I’m in the mood for an argument this morning, but this thing really doesn’t call for one. 

  1. flyhi - Sep 24, 2009 at 1:56 PM

    And Albert never used steroids to enhance his ability, A-Rod did.

  2. jeff Berardi - Sep 24, 2009 at 2:08 PM

    “And Albert never used steroids to enhance his ability, A-Rod did.”
    I’d like to see you prove that.

  3. GBS - Sep 24, 2009 at 2:30 PM

    I hate the fact that we’re at a point where someone has to prove a negative.
    Not that Jeff’s point isn’t valid – there’s a cloud of suspicion over everyone these days – but, man, it sure does suck.

  4. Michael - Sep 24, 2009 at 6:30 PM

    Hey, demanding proof of a negative is the new national pastime. Surpassed baseball about six months ago, I think.

  5. Michael - Sep 24, 2009 at 6:31 PM

    Of course, where steroids are concerned, there are test results…

  6. Alex Poterack - Sep 24, 2009 at 11:49 PM

    You can’t prove a negative, but you don’t have to make a big point of it, either.
    Do I think Pujols used steroids? No. Do I *know* he didn’t? No, so I won’t try to use it as a point in his favor. He’s the greatest baseball player in the game today; that’s something I can prove. Whether or not he had chemical help with that is a much messier discussion.

  7. Night Sweat - Feb 8, 2010 at 4:44 PM

    Thank you for your assist!

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