TEMPE, Ariz. -- Albert Pujols didn't sound concerned that his offseason right knee surgery would impact his ability to get ready for the regular season, but he'll be navigating through Spring Training more cautiously this year.
Pujols arrived to the Tempe Diablo Stadium facility on Tuesday, three days prior to the first full workout, and has been taking batting practice alongside Josh Hamilton. For now, though, he isn't doing much running.
"Just really taking it easy and just working my way into it," Pujols said. "My main goal is to try to be ready by Opening Day. It's not for Spring Training. Spring Training, obviously, you get your work and everything done. But one thing is we have plenty of time, so I'm not going to rush myself or take this injury into the season. I feel great right now."
Pujols' arthroscopic knee surgery, done early in the offseason, stems from running the bases in Fenway Park on Aug. 22. He missed the next four games, started the next 16 at designated hitter and didn't quite feel right the rest of the way.
"You saw how I played the last six or seven weeks of the season -- I was in a lot of pain," Pujols said. "Everything is good. I rehabbed well. This Spring Training will be different than last year, where I was doing everything. Right now, I'm kind of easing in."
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.