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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Miguel Cabrera or Albert Pujols? Who will finish with the better career?

Miguel Cabrera is fresh off of a triple crown, MVP winning season and is widely considered the best hitter in the game today. Albert Pujols, on the other hand, started his career with at least 30 home runs, 100 RBIs, and a .300 average in 10 straight seasons and was once the games best hitter. These are two of the greatest right-handed hitters of all time. I think that eventually both of them will be first ballot hall of famers. But which one will end his career with better numbers? Let's find out. 

Lets start with Cabrera. Although he isn't too great with the glove, he is a beast with the bat. Cabrera accomplished something that hadn't been done in many years by winning the triple crown and could possibly be the first player to ever win back-to-back triple crowns. Currently Cabrera has 361 home runs, 1243 RBIs, and a .321 average while still in only his 11th season in the big leagues, his age 31 season. Which means he is averaging  almost 33 home runs and 113 RBIs per season and he isn't even done this season. That's pretty impressive. He hasn't shown signs of slowing down either, as he is on pace for the best season of his career. Let's just assume he plays 10 more seasons and averages 30 home runs for the next 3 seasons and then slows down to 20 per season for 7 more years. That means he would end his career with with around 700 home runs after however many home runs he hits this season. That would put him at least third on the all-time list. Not to mention he would be somewhere around 2,000 RBI and 3,000 hits. Cabrera is well on pace to become one of the greatest hitters of all-time.

Time to go on to Albert. Unlike Cabrera, Pujols has 2 gold glove awards. And had Pujols stayed with the cardinals, he probably would have become the greatest cardinal hitter of all-time. Nevertheless he is one of the greats. Pujols hasn't been as good with the Los Angeles Angels, as he has battled injuries and slumps with his current team. He just doesn't look like the player he use to be. Right now, Pujols has 492 home runs, 1498 RBIs, and a .321 batting average over a 13 year career. Considering he stays on pace for 20 hrs per season for the rest of his 8 year contract, he will also finish with about 700 home runs. He is not the run producer that he use to be, but I think he still has some good seasons left in him. Albert could get near the career RBI record of 2,297, although if he continues to hit like he has the last few seasons he will probably only finish in the top ten. I don't know if this three-time MVP will ever win another one, but he still has the ability to contend for a few. Pujols isn't done just yet. 
So who will finish better?

The case for Cabrera:
Cabrera is 2 years younger and is still in his prime. Currently, he is the best hitter in the game. He has shown no signs of slowing down. He is trying to get his second straight triple crown award and MVP. Pujols has slowed down giving Cabrera an edge. 

The case for Pujols:
He started his career with ten seasons of 30 hrs, 100 RBIs, and a .300 batting average. He won 3 MVP awards and 2 gold gloves, not to mention his many all-star selections and other accolades. He won't have to play the field as much any more because he can be used as a DH to get more rest. 

Both players are very dangerous hitters and are in very dangerous lineups giving them many chances to drive in runs, although both players are in their thirties which means they will probably start to decline. Unless either of them start using PEDs, both players will go into the hall of fame. I truly believe that both players will end their careers with around 700 home runs, 2,000 RBIs, and over 3,000 hits. Which one will have more in any of those categories? It's almost too close to say. They are both really really good hitters. Who will finish better? You decide. 


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