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Albert Pujols Reacts to Fan Keeping 700th Home Run Ball

Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols blasted two home runs against the Dodgers on Friday night in Los Angeles to become just the fourth player in MLB history to reach 700 career homers.

The historic moment came in the top of the fourth inning with runners on second and third base, when Pujols drilled a slider from Dodgers pitcher Phil Bickford deep to left field for a three-run homer. The 42-year-old rounded the bases with a smile on his face before celebrating with Adrián Beltré and his teammates back at home plate.

The baseball that Pujols sent out of Dodger Stadium for No. 700 is now an important part of history and a lucky fan ended up with that piece of memorabilia on Friday. In fact, the fan—who remains unidentified—plans to keep the baseball, according to Ben Verlander of Fox Sports.

The decision will surely bring about some controversy, but Pujols himself did his best to shut down any further conversation about the fan keeping the ball. The future Hall of Famer explained that he would happily accept the ball back, but that he didn’t have any problem with the fan holding onto the historic souvenir.

“Souvenirs are for the fans. I don’t have any problem if they want to keep it,” Pujols said postgame, per Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register. “If they want to give it back, that’s great. But at the end of the day, I don’t focus on material stuff.”

With his two homers on Friday, Pujols joins Barry Bonds (762), Henry Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714) in the 700 home run club. He also now sits at 2,208 RBIs for his career, six away from tying Ruth for the second most all-time. 

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