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St. Louis Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols said Monday he’s filing for divorce from his wife, Deidre, who had a brain tumor removed just days ago. Pujols, a near-certain Hall of Famer, conceded that his timing was awkward.
“I realize this is not the most opportune time with Opening Day approaching and other family events that have recently taken place,” the player said in a statement released by his agent. “These situations are never easy and isn’t something that just happened overnight.”
On Sunday, Deidre Pujols praised doctors “who saved my life and cared for me after such a major surgery” in an Instagram post.
The Cardinals veteran found out that last week’s operation was a success via a text he received during an exhibition game. He thanked fans for their well wishes, though perhaps tellingly he did not plan to leave the Cardinals’ training camp and travel to California to be with her, The Associated Press reported previously.
The couple has been married for 22 years.
“I am thankful for the five beautiful children that we brought into this world and remain committed to raising them in a loving and safe environment,” he added in the statement.
HuffPost was unable to reach Deidre Pujols for comment.
After splitting 2021 between the Angels and Dodgers, Pujols is entering his 22nd and likely final season with the team for which he played in his first 11 years in the league. He signed a one-year contract for a reported $2.5 million with St. Louis.
Pujols ranks fifth on the all-time home run list with 679.
Albert Pujols and his wife, Deidre, pictured in a 2019 photo, have five children. (Photo: Michael Loccisano via Getty Images)
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.