Ever since he entered the league during the 2001 season, Albert Pujols of the St. Louis Cardinals has been one of the most successful players to play the game. Known for his power and athleticism, Pujols has always been one of the league’s top sluggers by season’s end. His lowest numbers came in 2007 when he finished with 32 home runs, 103 runs batted in and scored 99 runs – numbers that would make a career season for most players. He has only failed to reach the 40 home run mark four times, is yet to finish a season with less than 100 runs batted in and has not batted under .300 in any of the seasons he has been in the big league.
A lot of people see this nine-time All-Star who has won just about every award possible in baseball as one of the best players to ever play the game. On top of his All-Star style of play, Pujols has an All-Star mentality when it comes to helping out the communities that helped him get to where he is right now. In 2008, Pujols won the Roberto Clemente Award; an award that is given to the player that best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual’s contribution to his team and is voted on by baseball fans and members of the media.
Founder of the Pujols Family Foundation, Albert Pujols donates a lot of his time and money to helping families and children who live with Down syndrome; something that has hit the Pujols family personally as Albert and his wife Deidre have a daughter with Down syndrome. He wants to help children with disabilities and/or life-threatening illnesses experience extraordinary things throughout their lifetime. The Pujols Family Foundation also helps out in Albert’s homeland of the Dominican Republic, where he is trying to improve the standard of living and quality of life for impoverished children throughout the entire country and would like to help them with their education and medical relief.
“At the end of the day, when all is said and done playing this game…it doesn’t matter what you did in the field, it’s what you do off the field and the lives that you touch off the field and I try to do that through our Foundation, I try to do that when I go back to the Dominican Republic,” said Pujols in a statement after being awarded the Roberto Clemente Award in 2008.
Albert Pujols is one of many athletes who understands the true meaning of being a superstar. He is thankful for everything he has been given to date, especially since all he wanted to do growing up was to become a professional baseball player. Aside from his own foundation, Pujols also helps out with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, as well as the Ronald McDonald House. He feels as a professional athlete it is his responsibility to give back to the communities (just like Roberto Clemente believed in) that helped him out when he was struggling to make it into Major League Baseball. Now that he’s made it and has established a name for himself, Pujols doesn’t hesitate when it comes to giving back to those who need it the most and uses his name to the fullest to try and get others to follow along and reach out like he does.
To learn more about the Pujols Family Foundation, visit http://www.pujolsfamilyfoundation.org/