Pujols leads offensive explosion with three dingers

St. Louis Cardinals Albert Pujols (R) is greeted at home plate after hitting a three run home run as Texas Rangers catcher Yorvit Torrealba (L) walks by in the sixth inning of game 3 of the World Series at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas on October 22, 2011. UPI/Kevin Dietsch

Albert Pujols clubbed three home runs as the Cardinals pounded the Rangers 16-7 to take a 2-1 lead in the World Series. He also had 5 hits and 6 RBIs. The Cardinals chased Rangers starter Matt Harrison in the fourth inning and then continued their assault on a Texas bullpen that had been brilliant in the post-season.

The series had been characterized by low-scoring games, but everything changed when the teams arrived in the warm Texas climate. Both pitching staffs had a rough night, but Texas suffered a total collapse by giving up 15 runs.

It had looked like Texas may have stolen momentum in the series with their dramatic ninth-inning win in game two, but the Cardinals shook it off and unleashed Pujols and the rest of the offense. Pujols had received heavy criticism for not talking to the media after committing a key error in the ninth inning of game 2, but he shrugged that off as well.

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