500 Reasons to Celebrate Albert Pujols

PHOTO: Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols watches the ball after connecting for his 500th career home run,April 22, 2014.

Albert Pujols has entered baseball immortality.

The Los Angeles Angels' first baseman slugged two home runs against the Washington Nationals Tuesday, the 499th and 500th of his career – making him the 26th player in major league history to reach the milestone.

Pujols, 34, is the third-youngest player to hit 500 home runs, behind Jimmie Foxx and Alex Rodriguez. He smashed the bulk of those home runs while playing for the St. Louis Cardinals, signing with the Angels before the 2012 season.

The 500th came in the fifth inning. Pujols swung at the 1-2 offering from Washington Nationals pitcher Taylor Jordan, driving the pitch to left-center field.

Fans scrambled for the ball. The ball ricocheted off of one man’s hands before being scooped up by Staff Sgt. Thomas Sherrill, a California native.

Pujols lowered his head, jogging around the bases as he has 499 times before in the big leagues.

PHOTO: Albert Pujols circles the bases after hitting his 500th career home run, April 22, 2014.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo
PHOTO: Albert Pujols circles the bases after hitting his 500th career home run, April 22, 2014.

As he reached home plate, he pointed upward.

PHOTO: Albert Pujols points upward as he crosses home plate after hitting his 500th career home run, April 22, 2014.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo
PHOTO: Albert Pujols points upward as he crosses home plate after hitting his 500th career home run, April 22, 2014.

His teammates gathered nearby, congratulating the superstar.

PHOTO: Teammates greet Albert Pujols after his 500th career home run, April 22, 2014.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo
PHOTO: Teammates greet Albert Pujols after his 500th career home run, April 22, 2014.

The fans at Nationals Park cheered, and Pujols tipped his cap.

PHOTO: Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols acknowledges the applause from the crowd after hitting his 500th career home run, April 22, 2014.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo
PHOTO: Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols acknowledges the applause from the crowd after hitting his 500th career home run, April 22, 2014.

Following the 7-2 victory, his Angels teammates showered him with a bucket of Gatorade.

PHOTO: Los Angeles Angels Albert Pujols is showered with a buckle of Gatorade by his teammates during an on on-air interview, April 22, 2014 in Washington.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo
PHOTO: Los Angeles Angels Albert Pujols is showered with a buckle of Gatorade by his teammates during an on on-air interview, April 22, 2014 in Washington.

Pujols later posed with his 499th and 500th home run baseballs, the first player in five seasons to reach the milestone.

PHOTO: Los Angeles Angels Albert Pujols holds up the balls that he hit for his 499th, right, and 500th, left, career homers, April 22, 2014.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Photo
PHOTO: Los Angeles Angels Albert Pujols holds up the balls that he hit for his 499th, right, and 500th, left, career homers, April 22, 2014.

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