ANAHEIM, Calif. — Albert Pujols finally agreed he should wait ’til next year.
Pujols will miss the rest of the season to rest his injured left foot, the Los Angeles Angels announced Monday.
The $240 million slugger has given up his hope to play again this season when the Angels’ medical staff and front office advised him to give several months of rest to his partially torn plantar fascia before spring training.
While sitting out the past three weeks, Pujols repeatedly said he hoped to return for the final two weeks of the Angels’ dismal season if possible. He eventually had to acknowledge the plan made sense only as a salve to his pride.
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“It’s not an easy decision, as competitive as I am,” Pujols said at his locker before the Angels opened a series against Cleveland. “But I also understand that we (need) to look beyond the season.”
The three-time NL MVP hasn’t played since July 26, when he partially tore his troublesome plantar fascia in Oakland. Pujols had been rehabilitating the injury with hopes of playing in September, but the struggling Angels’ inability to get into playoff contention made that plan increasingly unwise.
Pujols consulted with owner Arte Moreno and general manager Jerry Dipoto before agreeing to shut himself down for the year.
“It was a decision of the organization, Arte and Jerry, because I don’t make a decision here,” said Pujols, who had career lows of 17 homers and 64 runs batted in this year. “I put my uniform on and get ready to play. They said, ‘This is what’s best for the organization in the long run,’ and they came and brought it to me. And I just told them, ‘Whatever you guys want to do, I’m all for it.’ It’s definitely hard, as I want to be out there, but I also understand that I can’t be selfish and put myself out there.”
• Alex Rodriguez’s newest, most outspoken lawyer declined Major League Baseball’s offer to publicly disclose evidence that led to a 211-game suspension of the Yankees’ slugger for repeated steroid use and related offenses to the basic agreement.
On Monday, MLB executive vice president Rob Manfred sent a letter to attorney Joseph Tacopina asking that A-Rod’s client confidentiality be waived so the documents could be released.
In turn, MLB would have disclosed “all drug tests” and “all prior violations” related to A-Rod, plus any documents associated with Rodriguez’s alleged obstruction of MLB’s investigation to the Biogenesis steroids scandal that led to the suspension of several players.
• Back-to-back losses have left the Los Angeles Dodgers in their worst slump in two months.
Yasiel Puig and Hanley Ramirez combined to go 0 for 9 while their teammates managed only six hits, and the Dodgers lost Monday night to Jose Fernandez and the Miami Marlins, 6-2.
Coupled with a loss Sunday at Philadelphia that snapped a 10-game winning streak, the Dodgers have dropped two in a row for the first time since June 20-21. They fell to 25-5 since the All-Star break and lost for only the third time in their past 22 road games.
“We didn’t play bad tonight,” manager Don Mattingly said. “We didn’t make any errors. We didn’t get a whole lot of hits. We just got beat. At some point you have to say you got beat.”
The Dodgers went 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position.