Angels release ‘upset’ Albert Pujols after dreadful start to season

Albert Pujols, one of baseball’s all-time leading sluggers, was released Thursday by the Los Angeles Angels, the team announced.

The future Hall of Famer and three-time MVP – in the final season of a 10-year contract worth $253 million – is batting just .198 with five home runs and a career-low .622 OPS in 24 games for the last-place Angels (13-16) this season.

The 41-year-old Pujols ranks fifth on baseball’s all-time home run list with 667 and third in career RBIs – behind only Hank Aaron and Babe Ruth – with 2,112 over 21 major-league seasons with the Cardinals and the Angels.

Pujols was “upset” that he was excluded from Wednesday’s lineup against the Rays, “and that the decision to bench him came from [the] front office, not [manager] Joe Madden,” according to a tweet by Los Angeles Times beat writer Mike DiGiovanna.

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