Blog Entry

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

Posted on: October 21, 2011 7:14 pm
Edited on: October 21, 2011 7:16 pm
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Albert Pujols says it's not fair.

I'm saying he still doesn't get it.

Not the way Michael Young does. Not the way Derek Jeter does.

Not the way Hideki Matsui does.

"I'm not trying to help the media," Matsui tells the huge contingent of Japanese reporters who he talks to before and after every game. "I'm helping the fans."

He's helping you understand what happened in the game you just watched, just as Pujols did Friday, when he finally gave the answers he should have given Thursday night.

Yes, he said, he should have caught center fielder Jon Jay's throw in the ninth inning of Game 2. Yes, he said, it was right that he was charged with an error on the play.

"It hit my glove," he said. "As soon as I saw [Ian] Kinsler take a big turn at third base, I thought I had a chance at him. I took my eyes off the ball, and I missed it. It was a good throw. I maybe make that catch 99 times out of 100."

And that's the best -- and most accurate part -- of what Pujols said Friday.

The worst part was when he claimed that he had no idea any reporters had wanted to talk to him. The worst part was when he said his only responsibilities were "with God and my family" . . . and not, apparently, with his team.

"C'mon guys, I don't think it's fair," he complained. "To rip someone's reputation for something like that, it's not fair."

To twist the truth, as Pujols did Friday, that's what is not fair.

Pujols claimed he was in lunch room after Game 2, claimed that the only reason he didn't talk to reporters was that no one told him that anyone wanted to talk to him.

I wasn't in the Cardinals clubhouse Thursday night. I didn't need to or care to talk to Albert Pujols. But I've been in the Cardinals clubhouse many times this postseason. When Pujols wants to talk, as he has on most nights, he is waiting at his locker when reporters are allowed in the clubhouse, or shortly thereafter.

He knows the deal. He knew that the ninth-inning throw that he didn't catch was a huge play in the game, which the Cardinals lost 2-1 to the Rangers.

He chose not to be there.

You can say that's his choice, and that you don't care. That's basically the Cardinals' position.

"I don't feel he did anything in the wrong," general manager John Mozeliak said.

Technically, maybe he didn't. I think he did, but if you want to say he didn't, fine.

But the reality is that there's a separate responsibility for a team's most prominent player. Young, the face of the Rangers team, understands that and is at his locker after every game.

Jeter does the same with the Yankees. Lance Berkman did the same when he played for the Astros. Heck, when I filled in covering the Detroit Pistons years ago, first Joe Dumars and then Grant Hill did it.

"For one thing, I think you guys would follow me home," Young joked Friday, when I asked him about it. "But it's just a matter of trying to be respectful."

It's being respectful to reporters, and it's being respectful to fans. It's also about being respectful to teammates.

Every question that Young or Jeter or Pujols answers is one that doesn't get thrown at his teammates. Not every player believes this is a big issue, but some of them sure do.

It's enough of an issue that when Rafael Soriano ducked out of the Yankees clubhouse after a bad game in April, Yankees president Randy Levine and general manager Brian Cashman were on the phone next day with Scott Boras, Soriano's agent.

"He's new to this market, so, like everything else, you live and you learn," Cashman told the New York Times.

Pujols isn't in that market, and maybe it's best if he never thinks about going there. Maybe it's best that he stays in St. Louis, which is a fine but also very forgiving baseball town.

Maybe it's best that he stays with the Cardinals, a team that has never been willing to confront him about anything.

Mozeliak said he did speak with one Cardinals player Friday. He talked to Berkman, clarifying a point about whether Pujols could have been requested to go to the interview room. Berkman had gotten it wrong when he phoned a national radio show Friday morning to try to defend Pujols.

But Berkman is one who almost always gets it right. He's one who gets it.

He was the most prominent player when he was an Astro, and he accepted the responsibilities that come with it.

"That's part of being that guy," Berkman said Friday. "Different players embrace that to different levels."

Some get it, some don't.

Thursday, when he didn't talk, Albert Pujols showed he doesn't get it.

Friday, when he did talk, Pujols showed it again.


Since: Jun 4, 2007
Posted on: October 22, 2011 11:59 am

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

I'm sure this has probably been said a hundred times on here, but after reading this article I had to put a comment on here.  LEAVE ALBERT ALONE!!!  Who cares if he ducked out of a media frenzy after screwing up???  This article trashes Pujols like he's some scum peice of trash....and why???  Because he won't talk to the "precious media"  SCREW THE MEDIA!!!  I agree with half of you on here about how the national media is probably mad because Philly, Boston or NY are not in the World Series.  This is a great series, with two great teams...Media be damned!!!

Since: Oct 25, 2008
Posted on: October 22, 2011 11:19 am

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

Wow... this whole diatribe is just a bash on Pujols because he doesn't feel a responsibility TO THE MEDIA.  The media is butthurt because he won't quantify the trash they are talking about him.  I'm a diehard Ranger fan, but I feel pretty strongly that Pujols doesn't owe the media SPIT.

Since: May 15, 2007
Posted on: October 22, 2011 10:28 am

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

This is why Reds fans hate the Cardinals. When the Reds got no-hit last year in the playoffs every one of them stayed and answered those questions after the game. The Cardinals always run their mouths when things are going well, but where are they when things start going wrong?

Stay classy StL

Since: Jul 3, 2010
Posted on: October 22, 2011 10:12 am

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

Wow, not wait a minute the Cardinals are Albert and they need to pay him 30 million a season or watch him walk.  This is a race issue.  They should pay him and pay him good.  Now, you wanna watch the Cardinals without Albert?  Would the Cubs be better with Albert?  Bottom line pay him what he's worth and do not let some balding sports writer trash him.  The man deserves to be paid the most money in the league.  PERIOD.

Since: May 24, 2007
Posted on: October 22, 2011 12:55 am

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

Pujols is human just like everyone else on this planet.  He knows what happened just like all of us, as it was replayed over and over -- by they way, I've never witnessed a national television crew so biased toward one team in my 36 years of living.  Pujols is a great player, the Cardinals are a great franchise and now the media is trying to tear down that franchise because they don't like it that another team from St. Louis is back in the world series.  Call the game fairly, give a guy a break - he screwed up - so be it - now move on to game 3.  This is sports.  It is a game after all, full of emotion.  I don't blame Pujols for not talking after such an event, would you?  If you answer "yes", well I bet you've never been there.  They all do it, depending on the circumstance - it is what it is!

Since: Oct 28, 2006
Posted on: October 21, 2011 11:48 pm

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

Here, here.....what a blow hard!  It's a good clean WS so this hack is trying make something out of nothing.  It's one play d-bag...what about the night he got 5 RBI's with a ding and 3 doubles....does he get it that night?  So according to you...if he talks to reporters every night he gets it?  Your an idiot! Ever have a a bad day?
How about a rebuttal after his next game where he makes great plays?

Jeter is a total stud....but I'll bet he had nights he didn't talk too! 

The team loves him and rally's around him.   His leadership is judged by the guys in that dugout...not by whiny journalists who think they have a real say in what goes down in the sports world! 

Since: Sep 30, 2011
Posted on: October 21, 2011 11:18 pm

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

Reporters think it's the biggest sin in sports when someone doesn't talk to them. And they are going to get their ounce of flesh and write about it. Here we have an essentially useless artical from a reporter whining that some sports star didn't want to talk to them right away.

Real investigative journalism.  

Since: Jul 23, 2009
Posted on: October 21, 2011 11:16 pm

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

I love the article.  Not everyone has to be a Cardinal fan or a Pujols fan.  The writer is clearly neither.  Who cares!!  The article was horrible anyway.  There are numerous things to write about during the World Series and this rookie chooses to write something stupid.

WHO doesn't get it????  Knobler!  haha!!

Since: Nov 23, 2008
Posted on: October 21, 2011 11:14 pm

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

He blew the play, then couldnt man up and face the media..typical

Since: Oct 21, 2011
Posted on: October 21, 2011 11:03 pm

Fair or not, Albert just doesn't get it

The man has proven time and time again that he is a team player, 1st ballot HOF and a pillar in the St Louis community.  That does not mean that he is not human and he will make mistakes.  All of us have made mistakes, but those that learn by the mistakes make better choices when the opportunity presents itself again.  I truly believe that the God fearing man that Pujols is, he will be different if and when the situation presents itself again.  He was 100% truthful when he said that his responsibilities are to God and his family.  As a believer, he has the order down!  He may consider his team part of his family, but that is his choice.  After watching him stick up for teammates for over 10 years, I would say that he views them as close as family.  He needs to just focus God, family and the task at hand......Beat the Rangers!

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