Pujols passes Foxx with career HR No. 535

Angels slugger takes Sabathia deep in first, now one blast behind Mantle

Pujols passes Foxx with career HR No. 535

NEW YORK -- Albert Pujols lifted a fly ball over Yankee Stadium's left-field fence in the first inning of the Angels' 6-2 defeat to the Yankees on Sunday, going back-to-back with Mike Trout to move past Jimmie Foxx for sole possession of 17th on the all-time home run list.

With that solo homer off Yankees lefty CC Sabathia, Pujols put himself at 535 home runs, 2,572 hits and 1,632 RBIs, with a contract that runs through 2021. He added career hit 2,573 with a single in the sixth.

Someday, the 35-year-old first baseman could become the third player in baseball history to amass 600 homers, 3,000 hits and 2,000 RBIs. The only player to do that so far is Hank Aaron. But the second could be Alex Rodriguez, who has 665 homers, 2,991 hits and 1,997 RBIs.

"I think it's awesome what he's doing, man," Pujols said of Rodriguez, who is hitting .280 with 11 homers and 28 RBIs after serving a year-long suspension in 2014.

Pujols isn't surprised to see Rodriguez pick it right back up.

"Good players do that, and I'm glad that he's doing it," Pujols said. "I'm happy for him."

Rodriguez passed Barry Bonds on Friday to move into second place on the all-time RBI list, according to Elias. But the milestone didn't get much attention, partly because fans and pundits nowadays tend to dismiss the overall importance of RBIs.

"I don't know how people can dismiss RBIs," said Pujols, who has 15 home runs this season and is now one away from tying Mickey Mantle with 536 for his career. "That's how you win, scoring runs. RBIs are a big part of the game."

Worth noting
• The Angels called up right-hander Drew Rucinski from Triple-A Salt Lake for Sunday's series finale. Rucinski, who had a 6.45 ERA in nine starts in the Pacific Coast League, took the place of utility man Grant Green and will be used out of the bullpen temporarily.

• Left-handed-hitting outfielder Matt Joyce started against Sabathia on Sunday, marking only the third time this season that Joyce has started against a lefty. With Green back in Triple-A, the Angels had no right-handed-hitting options for left field.

• The Angels announced their Minor League Players of the Month for May. Right-hander Jake Jewell (2.33 ERA, .188 batting average against for Class A Burlington) was top pitcher; outfielder Mike Fish (.471 batting average in 19 games for Class A Advanced Inland Empire) was top hitter; and second baseman Alex Yarbrough (.989 fielding percentage for Triple-A Salt Lake) was top defender.

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.