He has hit over 40 HR five times, while belting 30 or more the other four. He has had at least 103 RBI each season he has played.In 2003, he won the National League batting title with a .359 average This past season (2009) he won his first HR crown, with 47 He led the league in hits in 2003 with 212. He was also the league leader in TB four times.In seven All-Star appearances Pujols has batted .353 with three RBI.His career numbers are asunbelievable albeit incomplete as Musial's.BA.334, R1071, H1717, HR366, RBI1112. His career OPS is 172.Two great players from two time periods on the same squad. Obviously if Pujols continues to put up the crazy numbers we have become accustomed to expect for a few more years, he will surpass many of Stan's numbers and be the best Cardinal ever.Until that day, I believe Stan Musial is still the best Cardinal in history.What are your thoughtsCliff Eastham is a B/R Featured Columnist for the Cincinnati Reds .
The Summit League. One of the many mid-major leagues in the college basketball world that gives its champion the opportunity to play for the national title in March.The Kansas Jayhawks' opponent tonight, Oakland University, hails from the Summit League. Although KU was coming off of a national title the previous year, memories of the two consecutive first-round exists of the 2004 and 2006 seasons may have been lingering during last year's first round matchup.The game was tight the whole way through thanks to Summit League Player of the Year Ben Woodside, who put up a staggering 37 points against the Jayhawks."Sherron is still having nightmares about that," coach Bill Self said in his pregame conference fortonight's matchup against the Rochester, Mich. school.While most Kansas fans will be predicting a dominating performance, perhaps another opportunity for the Jayhawks to hit triple-digits again, some may not be that over-confident.Oakland has arguably the league's best guard in Johnathon Jones. He's 5-foot-11, possesses great speed and handles the ball well. However, he is known more for his ability to distribute the ball to his teammates.Jones needs just eight assists to set the conference record. Chances are he'll get the record in what is arguably the Mecca of college basketball, Allen Fieldhouse.You can bet that he'll be guarded by Sherron Collins, and when Collins is getting a blow on the bench, Tyshawn Taylor will have the honor.Judging by Oakland's preseason schedule, which includes trips to Kansas, Memphis, Michigan State, Oregon and Syracuse, coach Greg Kampe has to be thinking big-name competition will prepare his team for the rigors of the conference schedule and run in the conference tournament.Kampe won't just be relying on Jones tonight, though.
His big man, 6-11 Junior Keith Benson, is averaging a double-double which includes nearly 15 rebounds a game.There will likely be plenty of NBA scouts in the Fieldhouse tonight as Benson, along with Sherron Collins, Cole Aldrich and Xavier Henry should all be taken in the first round of next year's NBA draft.It will be interesting to see if Kansas can overcome its trend of sputtering out of the gate and on the flipside, whether or not Oakland can take advantage of it if Kansas does start slowly.It'll be important for Benson to stay out of foul trouble, which may not be all that easy. If he can stay disciplined on defense and let his guards do a lot of the work on offense, he could have a chance at reaching his averages.As a team, Oakland will be looking to get another defensive performance like they had against Wisconsin earlier in the season, when they held the Badgers to 58 points.My hunch is that they'll have a hard time holding Kansas under 80 points, as the talent discrepancy between Wisconsin and Kansas is, in a word, large.Oakland may have an opportunity to beat a Memphis, or an Oregon, or even a Syracuse this season, but the chances of them beating KU in the Fieldhouse are slim-to-none.It should be a fun game to watch tonight as Kansas will look to move to 4-0 on the year. I think Kansas fans should watch and see whether or not Collins plays with a little chip on his shoulder after the last Summit League guard he faced hung 37 points on the Jayhawks.One thing is for sure. The final score of tonight's game may not indicate a competitive game, but this Oakland-Kansas matchup sure produces plenty of must-watch storylines.. Rick Judson, ownerof Evergreen Homes; Dan Tingen, president of Tingen Construction; RichardGaylord, president of Richard Gaylord Homes; and Joe Appelmann, president ofStock Building Supply, urged Congress to enact bold measures that will stimulatethe housing market and, in turn, revive the local, state and national economies."Housing is central to our economy and is an engine of production that can leadus out of the recession," said Judson. "But it is crucial for Congress to enacta major stimulus package to stop the decline in home values, stem the tide offoreclosures, stabilize financial markets and re-ignite consumer demand." To get the North Carolina economy moving again, the housing industry is urgingCongress to support enhancements to the home buyer tax credit and providebelow-market, 30-year fixed-rate mortgages for home purchases.
Specifically, the legislation should include:1A 10 percent tax credit for all qualified home buyers capped at 3.5 percent of FHA, Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae loan limits (equaling $10,000 to $22,000 depending on geographic market). All primary home purchases through December 31, 2009, would be eligible. Repayment would be required only if the home was sold within three years. And the credit would be available at closing, making it easier for buyers to use it as a downpayment;2A below-market, 30-year fixed-rate mortgage for home purchases. The second component of the stimulus plan would provide qualified home buyers with 30-year fixed-rate mortgages at 2.99 percent interest on contracts closed until June 30, 2009 and 3.99 percent interest on closings between June 30 and December 31, 2009; and3Continued measures to reduce foreclosures and keep people in their homes.The housing industry representatives cited a similar plan with both a tax creditand a mortgage rate subsidy that was enacted in 1975 when the nation was also inthe midst of a recession.