It is no secret that much love was lost between the St. Louis Cardinals Nation and their former favorite Albert Pujols as he departed for a bigger contract with the Los Angeles Angels after the 2011 season. However, with the Cardinals set to face the Angels in Los Angeles for three games in the upcoming week, much media attention has been devoted to the current relationship between Pujols and the Cardinals.
Pujols has expressed mixed feelings for his former ball club in the last few days. He has reiterated that he is still "hurt" by the way his departure was handled by Cardinal Nation. However, he has also stated that a part of him will always be a Cardinal that the Cardinals "made me who I am."
Pujols has done much recently to show that he still holds deep respect for Cardinal Nation and the St. Louis community in which he still resides. Among those, the Angels have announced that they will wear the No. 6 Stan Musial patch during their series with the Cardinals on their warm-up gear. This was done at the urging of Pujols. Other teams have honered Stan "The Man" with a video tribute this season, but the Angels are the first, aside from the Cardinals, to wear a patch.
Among his other efforts for the St. Louis Community, Pujols has successfully lobbied the young Angels star outfielder Mike Trout to attend his charity golf tournament in St. Louis to benefit the Pujols Family Foundation which supports children with Down's Syndrome.
Pujols has always been an honorable St. Louis citizen despite his leaving for the Angels for a bigger contract than the one offered by the Cardinals. In his 11 years in St. Louis, Albert became good friends with Musial and urged fans to stop calling him "El Hombre" which is Spanish for "The Man." He attended Musial's funeral in the offseason and has always spoken highly of the former Cardinal great.Tags: Albert Pujols, Baseball, Cardinal Nation, Los Angeles Angels, Mike Trout, MLB, Pujols Family Foundation, St. Louis, St. Louis Cardinals, Stan Musial