A lot has been made of the huge effect that Albert Pujols is going to make on the Angel lineup. We all know he is going to put up big numbers, but what a lot of people are assuming is that he is going to "rub off" on the rest of the team. In particular, his excellent plate discipline is apparently supposed to magically be transferred to the rest of the Angel hitters by the sheer virtue of them having their names written on the same lineup card as Albert.
So I have to ask, is that an actual thing? Can Pujols really make the other Angel hitters more patient at the plate by some sort of weird baseball magic/osmosis? I have a hunch what the answer is, but let's see what the numbers tell us first.
There isn't a perfect that I can think to pull up for this, but one that might give us a good hint at least could be what Bobby Abreu did for the Angels when he first signed back in 2009. Like Pujols, Abreu has tremendous control of the strike zone. If anyone can replicate the effect that Pujols is supposed to provide, it is Abreu. Here is the change in walk rates for the main Angel hitters for the year Abreu joined the Halos and the year before.
(NOTE: Career-best numbers are in italics)
And now the number of pitches per plate appearance for those same players and time span.