TEMPE, Ariz. – Albert Pujols played in his first game since foot surgery, going 0 for 2 with a walk in the Los Angeles Angels' spring training game against San Diego on Friday.
Batting third as the designated hitter, Pujols grounded out to third base on a 1-0 pitch in his first at-bat. In the third inning, he drew a walk after fouling off a full-count pitch against starter Clayton Richard. Pujols grounded out again in the fifth.
Pujols had surgery on his right foot in December after trying a less invasive treatment program that didn't work quickly enough. The three-time NL MVP has said he expects to be ready for opening day.
"Just try to get myself ready and see where we're at," said Pujols, the former Fort Osage High School star.
The Angels likely will play Pujols mostly as a designated hitter again this season to minimize his movement until he is fully healthy. He was a DH for 123 games last season, when he played only 28 games at first base. He hit .268 with 31 home runs and was fourth in the majors with 119 RBIs.
Earlier in this camp, Pujols said he wasn't worried about how many games he played in spring training and that his important work comes in the batting cage.
Pujols has five years and $140 million remaining on the deal he signed as a free agent before the 2012 season.