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Here's how Albert Pujols hit his way to 700 home runs

MLB, St. Louis Cardinals

Albert Pujols is one of the greatest hitters of all time, a force at the plate who racked up three MVP awards and two World Series titles.

Now, near the end of his incredible career, he's added a rare honor to his collection of achievements.

Pujols just became the fourth member of the 700-HR club, joining Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron and Barry Bonds. It's been something of a late-career renaissance for Pujols -- his return to the St. Louis Cardinals for what he says is his final season has sparked his best offensive year in over a decade. He's hitting .266/.339/.531, and he has slugged 21 home runs in 101 games. If he decided to play for one more season, there's a good chance he'd even be able to pass Ruth for third on the all-time homer list.

Here is a recap of every dinger Pujols hit on his way to 700, starting at 695.

All-time home run list

Barry Bonds: 762
Hank Aaron: 755
Babe Ruth: 714
Albert Pujols: 700
Alex Rodriguez: 696

Home run No. 700

History was made in the top of the fourth, as Pujols crushed a pitch by Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Phil Beckford 389 feet into the stands. According to ESPN Stats & Information research, it's his fourth career game with multiple dingers since turning 42 years old, the most by a player 42 or older in MLB history.

The sports world gave Pujols his flowers for a remarkable accomplishment.

Home run No. 699

On Friday, Pujols launched a 434-foot dinger in the top of the third against the Dodgers. He now has four home runs over 430 feet after turning 42 years old. No other player has more than one in the Statcast era (Ichiro Suzuki and Nelson Cruz have one apiece). This is Pujols' 18th 20-home run season, third most in MLB history. Only Barry Bonds (19) and Hank Aaron (20) have more.

Home run No. 698

In the bottom of the sixth, Pujols launched a 427-foot dinger into left field to help the Cardinals tie the game at four apiece. According to ESPN Stats & Information research, his 19 homers this year are the second most in a single season by a player age 42 years or older, breaking a tie with Carlton Fisk (1990 and 1991). Barry Bonds was 42 years old when he hit 28 home runs in 2007.

Home run No. 697

Pujols moved into sole possession of fourth place Sunday with a go-ahead two-run home run off Chase De Jong. With his 18th home run of the season, he now ties Carlton Fisk for second-most all time by a player in his age-42 season or older. 

Home run No. 696

Pujols tied Alex Rodriguez for fourth on the all-time home run list Saturday against the Pirates.

Home run No. 695

On Sunday night against the Chicago Cubs, Pujols launched a pitch from Brandon Hughes out of the ballpark for his 695th career home run.

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