Believe it or not, coming out of spring training in 2001, the St. Louis Cardinals felt they did not have room for a rookie named Albert Pujols, even though he pounded the ball all spring. It took veteran Mark McGwire to convince Cards' manager Tony La Russa that not taking the kid to St. Louis would be the biggest mistake of his career. McGwire was right as Pujols had one of the greatest rookie seasons in Cardinals' history and rewarded La Russa’s decision by belting 37 home runs and driving in 130, all while maintaining a lofty .329 batting average as he was the unanimous selection for NL Rookie of the Year.
Presented is a pair of Nike size XXL white batting gloves used by Pujols during his NL Rookie of the Year season in 2001. These gloves display nice game use, with the palms and face of the fingers displaying light wear. The gloves are made of sheepskin leather and nylon and feature a Nike "swoosh" on the back of each glove in silver and dark blue. The Spandex wrist straps have Velcro fasteners and Pujols has signed each of these gloves in black marker on the top hands, inscribing "ROY 01." These gloves come with an LOA from J.T. Sports (1683, 1684) for the game use, along with an LOA from JSA for the signature.