MLB In Full Bloom - Albert Pujols Reaches 500 Home Run Club - 4/23/2014

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Albert Pujols was pretty sure he would reach the magical 500 home run mark at some point during the 2014 season. That moment came in the fifth inning on Tuesday night when Pujols hit his second homer of the game to reach 500 for his career. He also drove in five runs as the Angels beat the Washington Nationals 7-2. Pujols is the first player to hit his 499th and 500th homers in the same game and he is just three months past his 34th birthday, which makes him the third-youngest to get to 500 - Alex Rodriguez cheated his way to 500 at the age of 32 and Jimmy Foxx naturally got to 500 at the same age. Pujols now has 45 homers as an Angel and 455 as a St. Louis Cardinal. Next on the list for Pujols to pass is Eddie Murray (504) and Gary Sheffield (509). Congratulations Albert Pujols and thank you for doing it the right way! Let's not forget in the steroid era that Pujols has never tested positive on any PED test. Sure, he has declined steadily since back-to-back MVP seasons in 2008-09. But let’s not forget that Pujols went 30-100 in his last healthy season, which was just two years ago. He’s off to a great start as he looks to reach those totals again.

MLB NEWS & NOTES

  • Adam Wainwright (knee) suffered a hyperextended right knee during Tuesday's game against the Mets. Wainwright sailed through the first seven innings on a mere 79 pitches, but was swapped out with Kevin Siegrist in the bottom of the eighth. While the severity of the injury is uncertain, the Cardinals will likely provide an update after Tuesday's game.
  • Dee Gordon (head) left Tuesday's game after hitting his head on Jayson Nix's knee when Gordon was sliding head-first into third base on a steal. Gordon did undergo concussion tests after the game and did pass the test, but fantasy owners should still consider him day-to-day for now, but if he has to miss significant time, the Dodgers may have a diamond in the rough waiting in Triple-A in Alex Guerrero, who is currently slashing .407 through eight games.
  • Shin-Soo Choo (ankle) MRI offered good news Tuesday, as he does not have a high ankle sprain, and he will be treated as day-to-day for now. It appears Choo will be able to avoid a stint on the disabled list, and his fantasy owners shouldn't be without him for much longer. He will miss Wednesday's game and with Thursday being an off day, he'll be evaluated Friday. Michael Choice took Choo's place in left field and in the leadoff spot Tuesday, a trend that could continue for as long as Choo remains out.
  • Jose Fernandez matched his career high with 14 strikeouts in eight innings and combined with Steve Cishek on a three-hitter as the Marlins won 1-0 over the Braves on Tuesday. Fernandez was dealing in this one as he gave up just three singles and no walks over his eight shutout innings. Fernandez struck out Justin Upton, Dan Uggla and Evan Gattis three times apiece while getting Jason Heyward and Freddie Freeman twice each. The victory moved him to 3-1 with a 1.99 ERA this April. He'll have a shot at this same Braves lineup when the teams meet again next Tuesday.
  • Jhoulys Chacin (shoulder) could rejoin the Rockies' rotation as soon as April 29th. The Rockies indicated Monday that Chacin would likely need two more rehab starts, but now they're thinking just one could be enough. He'll start for Triple-A Colorado Springs on Thursday before being re-evaluated. Chacin has been out since the beginning of spring training with a strained shoulder.
  • Mike Olt hit his fourth home run of the season on Tuesday as the Cubs won back-to-back games for the first time this season. Olt's a three-run shot was an opposite field shot into a strong wind, which was most impressive. It's been mostly feast or famine for Olt this season, as he's hitting just .195 but has a .512 slugging percentage. The three-run homer gave him nine RBI in 41 at-bats this season and after the game Cubs manager Rick Renteria indicated after the game that Olt will be given more playing time at third base going forward.
  • Brandon Cumpton is expected to start on Thursday against the Reds in place of the injured Wandy Rodriguez. The Pirates have not officially made the announcement that Cumpton will be the starter, but they tipped their hand when they scratched him from Wednesday's start at Triple-A Indianapolis. Cumpton posted a surprising 2.05 ERA in six appearances for the Pirates last season and holds a 1.42 mark over his first three Triple-A outings this year. He should be owned in NL-Only leagues.