|God, Family & Baseball|
At Inside Baseball's "God, Family and Baseball" page, we take a look at the faith and family background of some of baseball's top players. Spirituality and faith are typically not the first things mentioned about major league baseball players yet many of them have a strong faith background. We will add additional transcriptions and audio beginning in late February and early March of 2009. Thanks for visiting!
Albert Pujols of the St. Louis Cardinals is not only one of the best hitters in baseball but he is also extremely devoted to God. His wife Deidre helped him on his path towards a life of faith and devotion to serving God and others.IB:
"Well, your progress as a major league player really developed quickly. You were playing one year at the Midwest League for Peoria and the next year you're an all-star in the major leagues. Did a lot of that have to do with your faith perspective giving you the confidence and, like you said before, leaving it in God's hands?"
"Definitely. Definitely. I'm pretty faithful and, obviously, I was a little disappointed about the round I went in the draft but I work hard at everything. I didn't take anything for granted. Thank God I accomplished my goal and now it's about him, it's not about Albert Pujols, it's not about my family, it's about God. What can I do here on earth to represent him. Does that mean that I'm perfect? No, I'm not perfect. I'm just a human like everybody else but I have a responsibility and my responsibility is to try to represent God here on earth and my goals are going to be in heaven whenever he calls me to."
Ryan Ludwick suffered a serious hip injury that nearly ended his career but his faith has been strengthened through the trial and challenge and he was a top home run hitter and run producer for the St. Louis Cardinals during the 2008 season.IB:
"...something you kind of hear from Albert Pujols who's a very faith-oriented person, it's not that he doesn't take the game seriously but there are more important things in life and he maybe can enjoy the game more."
"Yeah, and it all gets back to God. Me and my wife talk about it all the time. Everything happens for a reason and then there's a plan for everyone. And this was my plan. I think the injuries were there to show me something that you're a little bit impatient, you're a little bit too high on yourself and knock you down to the point that you put things in perspective and you enjoy the game a little bit more because, like I said, it gets taken away from you and you enjoy it."
"Well, first of all, thanks to God for keeping me healthy, to be able to do what I do, for keeping me healthy throughout this year. I think without him I could not accomplish everything I have done, so I've got to give the honor and glory to him. At the same time, I come to the ballpark to work hard, to try to become the better player every day."IB:
"Well, you had a scary experience as you collided with Mike Cameron a number of years back in the outfield'I guess one of the risks you take as a professional athlete. Did your faith in God help you to recover from that and help you make the most of that situation?Beltran:
"Of course, and let me tell you this. After we had that collision with Mike in the outfield, it would have been a lot worse than what it was. I only had a small fracture of my face and Cameron also had some fractures on his face but it could've been something worse than that so I believe God was there and he was protecting us. I"m being honest right now, I don't really think about it. I'm just going out there in the outfield to try to do the best I can. So, it doesn't come in my mind that when somebody hits a ball between right-center and left-center that I might have a collision with somebody. I just play the game the way it is and if something happens, it happens."