Originally written on Reading Between The Seams  |  Last updated 11/16/14

A man in a new uniform

How quickly things change. How quickly fans turn. Just last October, Albert Pujols was celebrating his second World Series Championship, and as the best player, on the world’s best team, Pujols sat on top of the baseball world. Unfortunately for Los Angeles Angels fans, the championship trophy Pujols held was while he was in a St. Louis Cardinals’ uniform. During the offseason, Pujols continued his reign atop MLB by signing a ten-year, $240 million dollar guaranteed contract. Angels fans celebrated, as the game’s best hitter was coming to town. Of course the immediate expectations were for a World Series Championship. Well, that was months ago. Fast forward to today, and the fans have flipped on Pujols. He’s hearing the “boo birds.”

Friday night, the Angels took on the Toronto Blue Jays and dropped another game, this time by the score of 4-0. Pujols went 0-4, dropping his average to .194. In 108 at bats, the slugger has zero HR and only five RBI. Worse than that, the Angels sit in last place in the A.L. West at 10-17. As CBSSports Eye on Baseball reports, just two days after they celebrated Jered Weaver’s no-hitter, the fans have had enough and the boos are raining down. How quickly things change.

Fans have the absolute right to boo a player as they feel fit. Fans pay money, and they expect production. Pujols knows the fans have that right and he knows he’s not producing. As reported by Landon Hall of the Orange County Register, Pujols said:

And my message to the fans is, they have a reason to boo. I’m not performing the way that I can, but just the same way I’m patient, they need to be patient and know that I’m gonna be here for 10 years. I don’t read the future, but I guarantee to you there’s gonna be more cheers than boos in those 10 years...This is just six weeks into the season. They have the right. They pay a lot of money to come and watch me play, and I’m not performing the way I know how to perform. But I also understand I can’t force it. I’m trying my best.

With that said, let’s put this in perspective. We are one month into a 162 game season. Relax Angels fans, Pujols will be just fine. More than likely, the Angels will be just fine. This man has career numbers of .326/.418/.611 with 445 HR in only 12 full seasons. These numbers are absolutely absurd, and Pujols is only 32 years old. Remember, the season is young.

The Comeback Kid?

Angels fans, please remember that the Pujols led Cardinals of 2011 were 10.5 games out of a wild card spot on August 24. Now, we know the outcome of last season. The Cardinals made a historic comeback, qualified for the playoffs and won one of the most dramatic World Series in history. When all looked bleak and gloomy for the Cards, things changed, and they changed quickly.

It’s a long season, folks. The Angels are talented and Pujols’ talent is immense. When all is said and done, balance will come to the baseball world. Pujols’ numbers will go up, and the Angels will win games. Until then, by all means feel free to boo. Just remember, those boos will turn to cheers. Remember, how quickly things change.

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