Pujols Progressing Well After Offseason Surgery.

Updated: February 15, 2017

After the Angels’ season was over, Pujols knew he had to do something about the pain in his foot. After the shockwave therapy suggested by doctor didn’t help, he knew surgery was the only option to get his foot right. Unfortunately, it had to wait until after the shockwave therapy was given time to see if it took. After the surgery, it seemed that Pujols was going to be forced to miss the start of the season. Yesterday, though, Pujols showed some positive signs, and while the slugger wouldn’t promise anything, Opening Day seems like more of a possibility that it had before.

“I don’t really have a date.” Pujols said. “I’ll be ready when I’m ready.” While noncommittal, Pujols is already doing everything on the field besides running, something he isn’t very good at, anyway. On a serious note, though, Pujols is already showing great signs of progress, and the fact that he’s already swinging a bat and taking ground balls is a positive step for someone who is going to be relied upon to again help carry the offense. While C.J. Cron looks could possibly ready to take the next step in his development, it’s just as likely he struggles and continues to be the streaky hitter he’s been thus far in his career, and while Calhoun is developing a solid all-around game, he’ll never be able to carry an offense the way that Mike Trout or Pujols can. While Pujols hasn’t been the player he was in his prime, he’s still a solid bat and a prodigious slugger that pitchers have to account for.

The biggest focal point heading into the season is the health of the pitching staff, and rightfully so; the offense was about league average last season, while the pitching staff took a dive off the highest cliff due to injuries and ineffective fill-ins. Therefore, the focus is on whether the Angels’ staff can bounce back and carry their end of the bargain alongside what should be a solid offense. That offense takes a huge hit, however, if Pujols is not healthy and contributing behind Trout. The argument could be made that Pujols is just as important as the health and effectiveness of pitchers like Garrett Richards, Tyler Skaggs, and Huston Street. Eventually, Pujols will decline, but for now, the Halos are relying on Pujols to contribute like the superstar he’s been during his career. Today was a good step towards that being a reality for the Angels and Pujols this season.

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