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.
“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 RBIs 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.”