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Pirates fans beware, Albert Pujols is returning to the Cardinals

The 42-year-old has had much success against Pittsburgh in his career.

MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Albert Pujols is back with the St. Louis Cardinals 10 years after leaving. His deal is for one year and $2.5 million. Likely, this will be his last season.

As many Pittsburgh Pirates fans remember, Pujols torched the team during his time in St. Louis. Over 795 career plate appearances against the Bucs, Pujols has a .358/.444/.665 slash line with 50 home runs. His career OPS of 1.108 against the Pirates is his second-highest mark against any team, trailing only the Washington Nationals (1.135). At PNC Park specifically, Pujols has a career line of .378/.453/.715 over 426 plate appearances. Pirates fans have witnessed him crush 30 home runs in their home park.

Pujols is not nearly the player he once was. He is old. He is slow. In terms of OPS+, he has not been an above-average hitter since 2016. His plate appearances this season will more than likely come strictly against left-handed pitching. That said, the man can still crush lefties. Last season, over 146 plate appearances, Pujols hit .294/.336/.603 with 13 home runs against southpaws.

I can most definitely see a world in which Pujols gets a few last jabs in against an organization that he’s destroyed over the first half of his career. I am imagining now the home runs that Pujols will inevitably hit against the likes of Jose Quintana, Dillion Peters, or Sam Howard.

Pujols is 21 home runs away from 700. I don’t think he will get there. If he does though, it would be fitting if it happened at PNC Park. Looking at the schedule, the Pirates host the Cardinals for the last series of the season. If Pujols is sitting on 699 at that point, it might be worth checking out those games in person.