Albert Pujols has done it. On Friday night, the St. Louis Cardinals star hit his 699th and 700th career home run against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Los Angeles to become the fourth player in MLB history to reach the 700 home club. The 42-year-old joins Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714) as the only players to reach that mark. According to ESPN, Puljos is the only one of the four to hit No. 699 and 700 on the same night.
"It's pretty special," Pujols said. "When it's really gonna hit me is when I'm done, at the end of the season, when I'm retired, and probably a moment or two after that I can look at the numbers. Look, don't get me wrong, I know what my place is in this game. But since Day 1, when I made my debut, it was never about numbers, it was never about chasing numbers. It was always about winning championships and trying to get better in this game. And I had so many people that taught me the right way early in my career, and that's how I've carried myself for 22 years that I've been in the big leagues. That's why I really don't focus on the numbers. I will, one day, but not right now."
Pujols is no stranger to making history in style. He hit career home runs 499 and 500 on the same night, and his 600th career home run was a grand slam. He is now 14 homers shy of reaching Ruth on the all-time list but that likely won't happen as there are only 10 games remaining on the schedule and Puljos announcing he will retire when the 2022 season comes to an end.
The 700 HR club now has its 4th member. pic.twitter.com/eGSPzuPHuA— MLB (@MLB) September 24, 2022
"What a special night," Pujols said, per MLB.com. "To have my family in town and to do it at Dodger Stadium. I said it earlier, my joy, pretty much, of this game came back last year [while playing for the Dodgers] and being in the postseason. It's pretty special with the Dodgers fans here, and I get both sides of this. [The Dodgers] get to enjoy this and I get to do it with a Cardinals uniform, which makes it even more special. I'm just thanking God."
Pujols began his MLB career with the Cardinals in 2001 and was with the team until 2011. He went on to play for the Los Angeles Angels for nearly 10 seasons before he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers during the 2021 season. Pujols joined the Cardinals at the start of this season and made his retirement announcement. Along with being a member of the 700 home run club, Pujols is an 11-time All-Star, three-time NL MVP, member of the 3,000 hit club and he's a two-time World Series Champion.