By: Tom Needham
Publisher: Enslow Publishers, Inc.
Publication Date: March 2009
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: December 2009
Albert Pujols’ first season in the pros as a St. Louis Cardinal was probably pretty intimidating because he was on the same team with the "Big Mac," Mark McGuire. He probably felt more like a handful of chicken mcnuggets, but if he did, it wasn't showing. He was versatile, worked very hard and showed everybody he could cut the mustard and made the roster. General manager Walt Jocketty said, "He's unproven, but he's certainly shown every indication he can compete at the major-league level. We'll see what develops." Whoa, talk about understatements!
Jose Alberto Pujols was born in the Domincan Republic, into a poor but very loving family. When he was sixteen, his family moved to the United States, eventually making their way to Independence, Missouri where he met David Fry, his first baseball coach. Hard work eventually got him drafted into the big leagues…he was chosen by the Cards on the thirteenth round. Were they nuts?! His first year out, 2001, he was named National League Rookie of the Year. Everyone expected him to hit the sophomore slump, but not Albert. "It's not what you did last year," he said. "It's what you're going to do this year. That's more important." From making $252 every two weeks to signing a $100 million dollar contract, it looked like Pujols had made it, but not without his faith and most of all his family.
This book is one of six in the series "Sport Stars With Heart" and without a doubt Pujols has to be on the top of the list. In this book you'll not only read about his sports career, but also about how he serves humanity. Included are numerous fascinating sidebars, career statistics, a glossary, an index and recommended reading and web links. There's one oddity in the book. Perhaps you can figure out why Chuck Berry has a sidebar all to his lonesome. Oh, well, it's April. Play ball!
Quill says: This book shows why Pujols is an MVP on and off the field!