It should be no surprise that Albert Pujols is the center of the Angel’s marketing efforts heading into baseball season, considering the franchise just committed $254 million to the first baseman this off season. Albert, however, appears to be none too pleased with the marketing folks in L.A.
The Angels put up 70 billboards throughout SoCal at the end of January referring to their new superstar as “El Hombre”. This is not the first time the nickname has been applied to the slugger as the St. Louis fans attempted to pin El Hombre (“The Man” in Spanish in case you struggled with the translation) on their star a few years ago. Albert, as a token of respect to Stan “The Man” Musial, asked the fans and media to avoid calling him by this nickname.
The Angels apparently thought that once out of St. Louis, Albert’s feelings would change. WRONG.
When asked yesterday about the billboards, Albert answered “I feel the same way. I had nothing to do with (the billboards). They haven’t talked to me about it.”
Pujols added “I still have the same respect for (Musial) as I had, not just for what hes done in baseball but for what he did for his country. That’s something you have to appreciate.”
Pujols went on to comment about the possibility of the Angels using “El Hombre” in the future by saying, “I haven’t made that decision, so I haven’talked to them about it. But I prefer they not use that.”
Angels VP of Marketing and Ticket Sales, Robert Alvarado said the team typically does not consult with players or their representatives prior to launching such campaigns.
He went on to say, “I haven’t experienced any resistance from players in the past about things like this. It’s all complimentary.”
Essentially, Alvarado and the Angels feel like Pujols’ feelings about the nickname due to the respect to Musial should not come into play in L.A. The Angels did state that they would consult with Albert and his representatives prior to launching any campaigns in the future.
If Albert is legitimately upset, I doubt he’ll stay that way for long. $250M+ and the L.A. sun seems to have a strange calming effect on folks….