Red Sox’s Xander Bogaerts Honors Albert Pujols; Used To Copy Batting Stance

'It's definitely someone that you look up to'

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If imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, then you can bet Xander Bogaerts thinks pretty highly of Albert Pujols.

The Angels legend was designated for assignment Thursday, released in the final year of his contract and thus making his future in Major League Baseball unknown after a decade with Los Angeles.

But the sad ending won’t be how his career is remembered. Just ask Bogaerts, who used to copy Pujols’ batting stance when he was still coming up in the minors.

“I remember when I was in (Single-A) Greenville, I used to hit like Pujols, his batting stance,” Bogaerts said in his postgame Zoom availability. “Obviously, at that time, he was in his prime. He has had such an amazing career. My batting stance was like his for a period of time when I got up to Greenville.

“It’s definitely someone that you look up to. You just want to be the same good as him. It’s just a dream that you have, being as good as him. He has had a tremendous career. It’s sad, what happened over there. I don?t know all the details but that’s definitely real sad.”

No matter what happens next for the 41-year-old Pujols, he probably is destined for the Hall of Fame.

But as noted by WBZ’s Johnny Miller to Bogaerts on the Zoom call, no one can defeat Father Time. The Red Sox shortstop did have someone in mind, though.

“Tom Brady has a good recipe,” Bogaerts said. “You know, so you should call him up.”

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