DENVER – A few weeks ago, Albert Pujols received a text out of the blue: “It's your time now. Go get it.”
That meant a lot coming from none other than Willie Mays, the Hall of Famer he was trying to catch.
Pujols tied Mays for fifth place on the career homer list with a two-run shot in the eighth inning, and the Los Angeles Angels rallied for a 5-3 win over the slumping Colorado Rockies on Sunday.
“To be able to have my name in the sentence with Willie Mays is unbelievable,” Pujols said. “I’m really humbled.”
Trailing 3-2, the 40-year-old Pujols lined a fastball from Carlos Estevez (1-3) into the empty seats in left field for his 660th homer. He was eagerly greeted by his teammates following his first homer since Aug. 4.
“I was just telling them, ‘Finally, I hit one in the air,’” Pujols cracked.
Pujols now trails only Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755), Babe Ruth (714) and Alex Rodriguez (696) on the career home run list.
“Everybody knew what was at stake. Everybody knew what was going on,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “It was almost like a walk-off reaction when he hit it. Everybody was thrilled for him.”