Pedro Martinez, David Ortiz upset at the 'shameful' way Angels handled Albert Pujols situation

·2-min read

The Los Angeles Angels made the tough decision Thursday to release first baseman Albert Pujols. While Pujols wasn't a superstar during his Angels tenure, it's tough to overstate how brilliantly he performed over the first decade of his career.

Because of that, some former players are upset with the way the Angels handled the situation. Both Pedro Martinez and David Ortiz expressed frustration with the team for unceremoniously ending Pujols' legendary career. 

Martinez referred to the Angels' actions as "shameful."

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Ortiz made it clear he didn't agree with the move.

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Ortiz said he felt Pujols should have been allowed "to walk away like you deserve."

Albert Pujols struggled with Angels

While that's a fair position to hold, it's not like Pujols was giving the Angels strong production. Pujols, 41, was hitting just .198 over 92 plate appearances, and hasn't hit above .245 since 2016. With Jared Walsh performing like a potential All-Star, the Angels felt they were better off making sure Walsh saw playing time at first base every day.

Pujols' tenure with the Angels wasn't as productive as either side hoped. In 10 seasons with the team, Pujols hit .256/.311/.447, with 222 home runs. 

Prior to that, Pujols was one of the best players in the majors. In 11 seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals, Pujols hit .328/.420/.617, with 445 home runs. He won the Rookie of the Year award in 2001, won three MVP awards and helped lead the team to two World Series wins.

Even though he never reached those highs with the Angels, Pujols is a no-doubt first-ballot Hall of Famer. That's why Martinez and Ortiz are frustrated with the Angels. They feel a player of Pujols' caliber should be allowed to dictate the end of his career, not be suddenly released. 

Pujols could still get a chance to end things the right way. He reportedly still wants to play and could latch on with another team before the end of the 2021 season. While he's no longer a star player, it's possible Pujols could still provide one more memorable moment for a contending team before he hangs up his cleats for good.

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