Originally posted on Fox Sports West  |  Last updated 4/25/12
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.--Throughout spring training, Angels first baseman Albert Pujols downplayed speculation that it might be difficult to adjust to a new league and a new set of pitchers after spending his first 11 seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals. All the National League pitchers were new to Pujols when he broke into the big leagues in 2001, Pujols reasoned, and that wasnt a problem Pujols hit .329 with 37 home runs and 130 runs batted in that season to win National League rookie of the year honors. But with each day that passes without a homer from Pujols, who has gone 17 games and 69 at-bats into 2012 without clearing the fences, the more it seems that, yes, perhaps that adjustment to a new league is a little tougher than he or the Angels envisioned. The pitcher has a slight advantage because the batter hasnt seen his release point, but a guy of Alberts talent usually makes a quick study of those things, and he will, Manager Mike Scioscia said after the Angels 5-0 loss to Tampa Bay on Tuesday night. Right now, we need a catalyst, and the obvious catalyst would be Albert swinging the bat like we know he can. That definitely hasnt happened yet. Pujols, a career .328 hitter with 445 homers and 1,329 RBIs entering the season, is hitting .232 with four RBIs entering Wednesday nights game against the Rays, and advanced metrics show he has been chasing far too many sliders and curveballs outside the strike zone. Pujols has also gone four consecutive games without a hit for the first time since 2010, and during that stretch, he faced seven pitchers who he had a total of four regular-season at-bats against. But when pressed after Tuesday nights game on the subject of adjusting to new pitchers and a new league, Pujols refused to use it as an excuse. I dont like to look for excuses I dont want to blame my struggles on being in a new league, Pujols said. Its the same game. Does it help if youve seen a guy before? Of course. But I still do the same preparation. To tell you the truth, I feel good. Im not far away from breaking out of this. --Mike DiGiovanna
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Most strikeouts by a hitter in a single season
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: Huskies, Buffaloes go back-to-back with amazing plays

Rolando McClain suspended indefinitely by NFL

Kerr has great response to latest Barkley criticism about Warriors

Helfrich, Kelly spoke about possibility of Kelly returning to Oregon

Paul Maurice: Game plans won’t work trying to stop McDavid

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Nats considering Ian Desmond reunion

Eric Dickerson: Rams would be better off without Jeff Fisher

Sheriff: Joe McKnight shooting suspect fired from inside car

Revis insists he has 'a lot' of football left, still loves game

Report: Siemian misses practice Friday, Lynch likely to start

Report: Five teams chasing Chris Sale, asking price high

Best of Yardbarker: CFB Championship Week chaos

Sporting life: Gifts for real fans (that aren't ugly NFL sweaters)

New faces help Spurs continue unparalleled success

The Pirates prepare for rarely chartered waters in dealing Andrew McCutchen

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Everything you need to know for CFB Championship Week

Box Score 12/2: High-kicking it into the weekend

Jeff Fisher is the unkillable cockroach of NFL head coaches

Four teams to keep an eye on at the 2017 Winter Meetings

Eugene Monroe opens up about NFL’s drug policy

Ideal MLB offseason blueprint for every team

Eight NFL teams facing must-win games in Week 13

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Sporting life: Gifts for real fans (that aren't ugly NFL Christmas sweaters)

New faces help Spurs continue unparalleled success

The Pirates prepare for rarely chartered waters in dealing Andrew McCutchen

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Everything you need to know for CFB Championship Week

Jeff Fisher is the unkillable cockroach of NFL head coaches

Four teams to keep an eye on at the 2017 Winter Meetings

Porzingis reshapes Knicks by elevating his game

TailGreater: Your championship week playlist is set

Clarification: Why the rules near the crease need to be fixed

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker