St. Louis Cardinals legend Albert Pujols launched the 701st home run of his career Friday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates as part of a 2-1 victory (box score). Entering the evening, Pujols had not homered since Friday, Sept. 23, against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Pujols' blast led off the bottom of the fourth inning and tied the score at 1-1. According to Statcast, the home run left the bat with an exit velocity of 102.6 mph and traveled some 398 feet. Below, you can observe the home run in all its moving image glory. Do note that the ball sailed into the third deck, right above the "Big Mac Land" signage:
Pujols, 42, is stationed in fourth place all-time, some 13 home runs behind Babe Ruth. He's already announced his intent to retire at season's end, and the Cardinals have just five games remaining, meaning he's a lock to remain in that position. Still, Pujols is doing well to create separation between himself and Alex Rodriguez, who ranks fifth all-time with 696 home runs.
Pujols entered Friday night hitting .261/.335/.519 (142 OPS+) on the year. He's now sitting at .262/.337/.527 with 22 home runs and 13 additional extra-base hits.
The Cardinals have already wrapped up the National League Central title. They're too far behind the Atlanta Braves and New York Mets,, for the second seed in the league. As a result, the Cardinals have little to play for the rest of the regular season than pride, conditioning and individual statistics.
St. Louis will wrap up its schedule with five more games against the Pirates: two more at home this weekend then three on the road in Pittsburgh to close out the year.