St. Louis Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols didn't speak to the media after last night's World Series Game 2, a 2-1 loss to the Texas Rangers keyed in large part by Pujols' ninth-innning error. In a Matthew Leach story on MLB.com, Pujols denies having deliberately ducked the media and claims that he would have spoken if Cardinals media relations staffer Brian Barlow had let him know he was wanted.
"What do you want me to wait, 40 minutes for you guys?" Pujols asked. "I was there in the clubhouse getting something to eat. What about the night before when I spoke for an hour and a half? That's not fair. I think with you guys, [we] have to walk on eggshells. I don't think that's fair. I was there. Usually Brian comes around and says, 'Hey, they need you over there.' Nobody approached him until 40 minutes [after the game]. You know what? Forty minutes, I was on the way home."
Pujols wasn't the only Cardinals player who didn't speak; Lance Berkman, Matt Holliday and Yadier Molina also failed to appear in the locker room. But all four claimed that this was just an unfortunate coincidence, and, according to Leach, emphatically denied that the failure to speak reflected on the character of their team.
Leach cites Berkman as being especially vocal on that point: "What I would like to not see happen is have this team characterized as a team that doesn't take responsibility, because I don't think that could be any further from the truth. I think we have a lot of stand-up guys in there."