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Los Angeles Angels part ways with 10-time All-Star Albert Pujols

Los Angeles Angels slugger Albert Pujols, shown June 23, 2019, was batting .198 with five home runs and 12 RBIs this season. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI
Los Angeles Angels slugger Albert Pujols, shown June 23, 2019, was batting .198 with five home runs and 12 RBIs this season. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo

May 6 (UPI) -- The Angels parted ways with future Hall of Fame first baseman Albert Pujols just two months into the final season of his 10-year contract, ending his near-decade run in Los Angeles.

The team officially designated the 41-year-old Pujols for assignment Thursday, a formality before he becomes a free agent for the second time in his 21-year MLB career. The 10-time All-Star selection is expected to be released as soon as he clears waivers in three days.

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"The Angels organization proudly signed Albert Pujols in 2011, and are honored that he has worn an Angels jersey for nearly half of his Hall of Fame career," Angels owner Arte Moreno said in a statement. "Albert's historical accomplishments, both on and off the field, serve as an inspiration to athletes everywhere, and his actions define what it means to be a true superstar.

"Since his Rookie of the Year season in 2001, Albert and his wife Deidre have generously given their time and resources to countless charities throughout the world. We are thankful to the entire Pujols family."

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Pujols had a .198 batting average with five home runs and 12 RBIs over 24 games this season. He didn't have a clear role for the Angels with first baseman Jared Walsh playing well and Shohei Ohtani getting more at-bats as the club's designated hitter.

Pujols, who is earning $30 million this season, is expected to keep playing in 2021, though it remains unclear if any team will add him.

The three-time National League MVP spent the first decade of his career with the St. Louis Cardinals (2001-11). He ranks sixth in career home runs (667), third in RBIs (2,112) and 14th in hits (3,253).

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Pujols also has won two Gold Gloves and six Silver Sluggers. He helped the Cardinals win two World Series titles (2006, 2011).

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