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Pujols’ 2010 quick hits and misses

Some statistical highlights and just-misses in another stellar season for St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols.

Albert Pujols (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)Despite sitting out the final game of the Pittsburgh series and taking only three official at-bats in the St. Louis Cardinals’ final two games, first baseman Albert Pujols earned his first National League RBI title with 118 as well as his second consecutive NL home run title with 42.

Albert also led the league with 115 runs scored, 82 extra-base hits and 38 intentional walks. It was his second consecutive season with the most runs scored and fifth overall. Pujols has been the NL leader in intentional walks for three years running and four times in total.

In his tenth season, Pujols also had several disappointments. He finished with a career-low .312 batting average and was edged on the final day by Cincinnati’s Joey Votto for the league lead in slugging percentage, .600 to .596. Also, for the first time in three seasons, Pujols fell short of 40 doubles with 39.

This last number is notable in that with one more double, Pujols would have broken his tie with the immortal Lou Gehrig for the most 40 double-40 home run seasons in MLB history.

40 double, 40 home run seasons, MLB history

Rank Player Years 1st Last Age
1 Albert Pujols 3 2003 2009 23-29
2 Lou Gehrig 3 1927 1934 24-31
T3 David Ortiz 2 2004 2005 28-29
T3 Todd Helton 2 2000 2001 26-27
T3 Albert Belle 2 1995 1998 28-31
T3 Hank Greenberg 2 1937 1940 26-29
T3 Chuck Klein 2 1929 1930 24-25
T3 Babe Ruth 2 1921 1923 26-28

Albert Pujols, doubles and home runs by season

2001 47 37
2002 40 34
2003 51L 43
2004 51 46
2005 38 41
2006 33 49
2007 38 32
2008 44 37
2009 45 47L
2010 39 42L
L=led league

Thanks to researcher Tom Orf for the first table.

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Brian Walton

Brian Walton runs The Cardinal Nation and The Cardinal Nation Blog, covering the St. Louis Cardinals and minor league system.
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