The Los Angeles Dodgers signed former Los Angeles Angels slugger and future Hall of Famer Albert Pujols to a one-year contract, the team announced Monday.
“First, I would like to thank God for the opportunity he has given me to play this game,” Pujols tweeted Monday. “While this is not how I thought my time in Anaheim would end, I am truly grateful for the memories and friendships that have been created over the past 10 years. Thank you to my teammates.
“The role that Andrew Friedman and Dave Roberts have presented to me is one that I embrace,” he continued, referring to the Dodgers president, baseball operations and manager. “I am excited to be part of the Dodger family and want to thank Andrew, Dave and the rest of the Dodger organization for this opportunity.
“My goal is the same as it’s always been — to help the ballclub win a championship in 2021. I’ve seen up close just how talented this team is and I look forward to contributing.”
Pujols was in Monday’s starting lineup against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Dodger Stadium, batting fourth. He flew out to center field in the first inning in his first at-bat as a Dodger and then singled in Mookie Betts in the third inning in his second.
Pujols was designated for assignment by the Angels on May 6, ending a decade-long run in Anaheim that saw him solidify his credentials as one of the game’s most feared power hitters, though his numbers generally declined from his peak with the St. Louis Cardinals and the Angels lacked postseason success during his time there.
Pujols had a .198 average with five home runs and 12 RBIs when he was released, including a .143 average with one home run and two RBIs in his final seven games with the Angels.
A three-time MVP with the Cardinals and 10-time all-star, Pujols ranks fifth all-time with 667 home runs, fifth with 669 doubles and second with 2,112 RBIs. He also ranks fifth in total bases and fifth in extra-base hits.
Pujols and Hank Aaron are the only players to ever accumulate 3,000 hits, 600 home runs and 600 doubles.
During his Angels career, he appeared in 1,181 games, amassing 1,180 hits, 214 doubles, 222 home runs and 783 RBIs.
Since signing Pujols before the 2012 season, the Angels reached the postseason only once, being swept in an American League division series by the Kansas City Royals in 2014.
Pujols, 41, was in the final year of his 10-year contract with the Angels, a deal worth $240 million.
The agreement with Pujols was first reported Saturday. The Dodgers transferred pitcher Tony Gonsolin to the 60-day injured list to make room on the 40-man roster.