Right now there are several Missouri area baseball fans still in shock at the news that Albert Pujols, the surefire Hall of Fame first baseman of the St. Louis Cardinals will no longer be manning his longtime post for the World Series Champions. Instead, Pujols signed a 10-year, $254 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels that will either prove to be a genius move in the end or will bust a franchise that already has several bad contracts on the team (read: Vernon Wells).
Still for local fans wanting to see Albert, you have one opportunity to see him and then root against him in his new digs when his new team opens the 2012 MLB Season against the Kansas City Royals. On April 6, the up and coming Royals will play against Pujols in the first official action of Pujols' AL career.
It will be interesting to see how Pujols' new team and contract plays out, but it cannot hurt that he's now going to be centered in the greater media market of Los Angeles and that the team can always move him to DH as he gets older if age becomes a problem -- with which a 10-year contract is something the team has to think about. Still despite the foul cries from St. Louis faithful or those bashing the length and amount of the contract, it's hard to fault the Angels for wanting to go all in. After all, acquiring the single best hitter in all of baseball radically shifts the power structure in the AL West away from the Texas Rangers and makes the Angels the team to beat.
The Royals will get the first look out of any team in the Majors.