Scioscia: Pujols' stride better, but 'not close to normal'

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Albert Pujols’ time as a designated hitter may come to an end at some point, but Los Angeles Angels manager Mike Scioscia is not exactly sure when.

Pujols was pulled in the fourth inning of the Angels’ Aug. 22 game against the Boston Red Sox with a tight right calf. He missed the following four games and has been the team’s designated hitter since Aug. 28.

“We’ll see,” Scioscia said, when asked if Pujols would return to first base soon. “He’s been taking some ground balls, but he’s still not quite to that level. Hopefully he’s feeling comfortable enough at some point to get out there, but right now it’s something you can’t push.”

Kendrys Morales has been playing first base in Pujols’ place and the Angels won six straight and 11 of 12 with Pujols as the designated hitter. But after losing two straight to the Oakland Athletics this week it might be time for a change.

“His stride looks a little easier from where it was 10 days ago,” Scioscia said. “But it’s not close to normal.”

Here’s a look at tonight’s lineups:


Coco Crisp CF

Seth Smith LF

Josh Reddick RF

Yoenis Cespedes DH

Brandon Moss 1B

Josh Donaldson 3B

Stephen Drew SS

Derek Norris C

Cliff Pennington 2B

RHP A.J. Griffin


Mike Trout CF

Torii Hunter RF

Albert Pujols DH

Kendrys Morales

Howie Kendrick 2B

Erick Aybar SS

Vernon Wells LF

Alberto Callaspo 3B

Chris Iannetta C

RHP Ervin Santana