PHOTOGRAPH BY MATT A. BROWN LOS ANGELES ANGELS
Machine Made With this swing off Nationals righthander Taylor Jordan on April 22 in Washington, Angels first baseman Albert Pujols became the 26th player to hit 500 home runs. Hobbled by a foot injury last season that limited him to 99 games, Pujols, 34, is healthy again, averaging one dinger every 11.1 at bats. (He averaged one every 10.9 in 2006, when he belted a career-high 49.) Next to reach 500 should be White Sox DH Adam Dunn, 34, who at week's end was 55 away, but the 500 club may not grow much more for a while after that: Jason Giambi, 43, has 438; David Ortiz, 38, has 436; Paul Konerko, 38, has 434; and Alfonso Soriano, 38, has 410.
PHOTOGRAPH BY DONALD MIRALLE FOR SPORTS ILLUSTRATED
Your Mission, Mr. Phelps After announcing two weeks ago that he was coming out of retirement, Michael Phelps returned to the pool at the Arena Grand Prix in Mesa, Ariz.—his first meet since the 2012 London Olympics. He came in second to rival Ryan Lochte in the 100-meter butterfly final last Thursday in 52.13, then chose to swim fly (left) in the 50 freestyle event on Friday, finishing with a time of 24.06, tied for 25th best in the world in the 50 butterfly this year. The 28-year-old Phelps is looking to add to his record 22 Olympic medals in Rio in 2016.
PHOTOGRAPH BY HANK DELESPINASSE FOR SPORTS ILLUSTRATED
Jack Ramsay 1925--2014 The Trail Blazers had yet to have a winning record in their first six years when Jack Ramsay arrived as coach in the summer of 1976. That season Ramsay (in blue), center Bill Walton (far right) and Portland were celebrating the team's first (and still only) championship, with a Game 6 win over the 76ers. The Blazers may have been even better in '77--78: They were 50--10 when Walton injured his foot. Even Dr. Jack—Ramsay received a doctorate, in education, from Penn in 1963—couldn't heal him, and Portland didn't return to the Finals during his remaining nine years in the Rose City. He went on to coach the Pacers, finishing with a career record of 864--783, and became a respected broadcaster, but it was in Portland that he made history.