The Los Angeles Dodgers are enjoying another fun season in 2021.
After winning the World Series in 2020, the team is proving that it’s here to stay.
The Dodgers’ current 54-34 record is good for second place in a very competitive National League Central division.
They are just one game back of the first-place San Francisco Giants, and most projections expect the Dodgers to ultimately claim the division crown by the end of the season.
One of the biggest surprises for the Dodgers this season has been the impact of a newly-added veteran by the name of Albert Pujols.
Albert Pujols stays red hot. #Dodgers
— Morning Blitz (@Morning_Blitz) July 4, 2021
After being cut by the Los Angeles Angels, Pujols has settled in nicely across town in Dodger Blue.
His impact has been big in more ways than one.
Some fans have speculated about the possibility of the Dodgers trading Pujols away while his value is high, but that would be a mistake.
The Return Would Be Low
It’s hard to imagine that there is going to be a very competitive market for Pujols.
After all, every team in the league had a chance to bring Pujols in after he was released by the Angels in May, and only two or three clubs showed any interest (with the Dodgers being one of them).
While Pujols has had a nice couple of months for the Dodgers, it seems unlikely that his perceived value has changed much.
He brings a lot to the table for LA, and the club would likely not get a return that corresponds with his value.
As Mentioned, Pujols Is Secretly Worth A Lot To This Dodgers Team
The acquisition of Pujols was largely written off as inconsequential, but he has been a key part of the Dodgers’ recent success.
The #Dodgers have gone 30-13 since signing Albert Pujols.
— Dodgers Nation (@DodgersNation) July 4, 2021
As a Dodger, Pujols is batting .257 with a .752 OPS and a 106 OPS+.
Those numbers are perfectly average at first glance.
But the 41-year-old has actually added a ton of value in two key areas.
One, he has crushed lefties, especially as a pinch-hitter.
The future Hall of Famer has a slash line of .317/.356/.634 against left-handed pitching this season, and he’s batting .333 as a pinch-hitter.
Two, he is one of the best leaders the sport has ever seen.
Clayton Kershaw recently explained how players tend to gravitate towards Pujols.
Kershaw added that the veteran’s presence helps generate a winning culture.
Trading away a glue guy can end up being a huge mistake as it pertains to the clubhouse environment.
His Postseason Success Makes Him A Perfect Fit For A Dodgers Team With Title Aspirations
Pujols is one of the greatest postseason hitters the sport has ever seen.
Across 77 career playoffs games, he has managed a .323 batting average and an OPS of 1.030.
He has also homered 19 times and driven in 54 runs.
It has been a while since Pujols has been able to play in the postseason, but there’s no doubt that he’s itching to get back there.
The Dodgers are well on their way, and Pujols could see an increased role in October due to his unbelievable track record.
Why would you want to trade this guy away?