The fan who caught the ball hit by Albert Pujols for his 700th career home run on Friday night reportedly intends to keep it, turning down multiple offers for the ball before leaving Dodger Stadium with it in his possession according to Ben Verlander of Fox Sports. The unidentified fan now possesses a piece of baseball history, as Pujols to hit 700 home runs.
The St. Louis Cardinals designated hitter reached the milestone with home runs in back-to-back at-bats on Friday night against the Los Angeles Dodgers, with Pujols hammering No. 700 into the left field pavilion during the fourth inning. With that home run, Pujols joined Babe Ruth (714), Hank Aaron (755), and Barry Bonds (762) as the only players in MLB history to ever reach 700 homers.
Had the fan been willing to give up the ball from Pujols' home run, it likely would have netted him a very handsome reward from the Cardinals or whoever else wanted the ball. Instead, the fan opted to keep the piece of Major League history for himself -- which Pujols said afterwards he was not concerned with.
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"Souvenirs are for the fans. I don't have any problem if they want to keep it," Pujols said, per Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register. "If they want to give it back, that's great. But at the end of the day, I don't focus on material stuff."
Pujols' 700th home run helps to complete his legacy after a 22-year career in the Major Leagues that has seen the 42-year old do almost everything there is to accomplish in baseball including winning three NL MVP awards, being selected to 11 All-Star Games and winning the World Series twice with the Cardinals. Pujols will retire at the end of the 2022 season.