Albert Pujols injury: Angels slugger wants to return in 2013

Brian Bahr

Pujols plans to return to the Angels' lineup in 2013 despite their rapidly decreasing playoff chances.

Albert Pujols will attempt to return to the Los Angeles Angels before the end of the season despite his injury and the Angels record, reports Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com.

Pujols suffered a tear in his left plantar fascia, and is currently using a walking boot. Despite the tear, Pujols hopes to play again in 2013, telling Gonzalez:

"I was already playing 45 percent this year. Even if I feel 55 percent that I can come back and play, I'm going to be out there and playing because I love this game and I grew up playing this game and I'm going to do the best I can to help this organization win. Whether that's two games out, 20 games out -- if I feel good, ready to play, I'm going to be out there playing the field."

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The slugger will not need to undergo surgery on his foot, and he plans to exit the boot around Aug. 20

There is little reason for Pujols to push himself to return this year. Los Angeles entered Friday with a 49-58 record, 13.5 games behind the Oakland Athletics in the AL West and 11 games back of the Cleveland Indians for the second wild card spot.

Pujols wants to return this season, but also said he's "not going to rush anything." The injury forced Pujols to start 65 of 99 games at designated hitter; he hit .258/.330/.437 in 2013, well-below his career averages.

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