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Albert Pujols on possibly needing foot surgery: “I’m definitely going to try to do something”

Jul 5, 2013, 11:49 AM EDT

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Albert Pujols is so hobbled by plantar fasciitis in his left foot that simply watching him run is painful, so not surprisingly people are starting to ask the Angels first baseman (and now mostly designated hitter) if he plans to have offseason surgery.

Pujols more or less avoided answering, but did tell Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times:

When we get to that point, we’ll talk about it. I’m definitely going to try to do something after the season to help me out and not play in that pain I’ve been playing in. There’s no doubt that I’ll be a full-time first baseman next year.

Pujols has been banged up for a while now, but he can barely move this season. He’s hitting .244 with 13 homers and a .736 OPS in 83 games for by far the worst production of his career and has resorted to playing DH nearly full time just to stay in the lineup. Plantar fasciitis is often overlooked in terms of absolutely wrecking an athlete, but it can be a very nasty injury that lingers.

  1. heyblueyoustink - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:00 PM

    If I were an Angels fan…..

    • historiophiliac - Jul 5, 2013 at 1:17 PM

      The phantastic irony there is greatly appreciated.

  2. echech88 - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:07 PM

    Albert is pretty tough and it’s admirable he’s hanging in there but you wonder if he’d have been better served going on the DL for a month to let it heal than being 60% of himself every night hitting 3rd.

    • flamethrower101 - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:11 PM

      There’s being admirable and there’s being idiotic. I think Albert is being idiotic at this point. It’s clear he’s moving worse now than at the beginning of the season. His production has been atrocious and my grandmother runs better than he does. At some point he just has to concede that the issue won’t improve until he either rests for an extended time or goes under the knife.

      I understand that doing so in fans’ minds would mean “giving up” on the season, but if he worsens the injury – say, ruptures his Achilles – or does serious damage to his balky knee – wouldn’t you be “giving up” on 2014 as well?

      • paperlions - Jul 5, 2013 at 7:22 PM

        Yep, he reminds me of post 1991 Cal Ripken. Banged up a lot, but refusing to do what is necessary to play at 100%. Pujols is actually hitting better this year than Ripken did in most (7 of 10 years) of the last decade of his career.

  3. riverace19 - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:17 PM

    Enjoy the last 8 years of that contract suckers

  4. kinggeorge96 - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:22 PM

    Everyone seems to be forgetting that El Hombre isn’t in charge… Its up to the manager who plays and who doesn’t. Scioscia must think Albert is his best option? No other reason to let him play this bad…

    • flamethrower101 - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:28 PM

      So Mike Scioscia is gonna run Albert out there until he blows his foot or knee out becuase “he doesn’t have any better options?” If that’s true than Mike should be fired the minute he does blow his foot out.

    • stlouis1baseball - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:33 PM

      Great point(s) George. That in mind…thumbs down for the “El Hombre” reference.
      Albert will tell you…he is NOT “El Hombre.”

      • brianincbus - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:38 PM

        stlouis1baseball – Lighten up Francis. It’s like he or anyone is calling himself “The Better Man”.

      • stlouis1baseball - Jul 5, 2013 at 12:45 PM

        Incubus:
        I don’t have anything to “lighten up” about. I am not wound up.
        Not in an argumentative mood in any way.
        Sure…I would rather not be at work today…but we have business that needs addressed.
        But let’s not over-react.
        I simply pointed out that Albert isn’t “El Hombre.”
        Further, he has made it quite clear (on several occasions) he doesn’t like the reference.
        Hell…I even told George he made valid point(s).

    • jeffa43 - Jul 5, 2013 at 9:39 PM

      St. Loui… We argued at length 2 months ago, when I said Pujoles was done and he will not last the season …

      Hats off to you… You are clearly right. He looks stellar.

  5. shanabartels - Jul 5, 2013 at 1:22 PM

    I’ve seen my mom and my aunt suffer with plantar fasciitis in everyday life — not trying to run the bases or swing a bat — and I don’t doubt that it’s very painful. But it DOES generally clear up without surgical intervention if given proper rest. With the busy schedule of most regular folks’ everyday life, or with the demands on a professional athlete, getting the amount of rest necessary to clear up the inflammation does not happen without making some lifestyle changes to facilitate the process. If the Angels are unwilling to give Pujols 15 days to put his feet up and stop exacerbating the inflammation, that’s on them.

    • stex52 - Jul 5, 2013 at 1:53 PM

      You’re right. It can usually be cleared up without surgery. But I’m not sure about 15 days. My personal experience was steady icing of the foot and orthotic support for six to eight weeks. Now in his case they might be able to support it with an appropriate steroid (ooohhhh I said that word!) therapy. But I would still feel like he will need a more extended DL stay.

      • Kevin Gillman - Jul 5, 2013 at 2:47 PM

        If he does, he does. Josh and Trumbo can carry the load if that need be. I mean Hamilton can’t stink all season, right? He did hit a tying HR last night, so why not give Albert the proper rest he needs?

  6. gibbyfan - Jul 5, 2013 at 4:28 PM

    As a card fan I fee sympathy for Albert, but not for the Angels.

  7. Carl Hancock - Jul 5, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    Pujols has about a good a chance of being an everyday first baseman next season as Pete Kozma has of winning the NL MVP. His issues are far beyond the plantar fasciitis. That’s a smokescreen and something’s he’s dealt with almost his entire career. The bigger issues are his legs and in turn his bat speed. His knee still isn’t right from the surgery and by compensating for that injury he’s going to cause damage to his other leg as well as the knee he had surgery on. His days as an everyday fielder are over just like his days as one of the most feared hitters in baseball are over. It’s sad to watch but this isn’t 1999. Players aren’t going to magically get better as they age as Bonds, Clemens, etc. did. It’s back to peaking around 30 and then a slow decline to major decline from around age 34/35 or so. Just wait until he’s 39, 40, 41, 42 and making $30 million a year. Things are going to get ugly in Anaheim.

  8. romoscollarbone - Jul 5, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    I have plantar fac. right now. It sucks, royally. But it’s definitely something you can manage to an extent and hope it doesn’t tear completely prior to the offseason. I think the larger issue which was touched upon earlier is that you can compromise the structural integrity of other body parts and ultimately cause damage that could be more detrimental.

  9. kpow55 - Jul 6, 2013 at 1:50 AM

    Give Albert 15-30 days off and Hamilton 90-900 and hope for a playoff run.

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