Bonds Did It
I didn’t stay up to see #756. I did catch 755 live last week on TV. But, last night, the heat had taken the gas out of me and I packed it in before the 11 o’clock news. So, it was left for my wife to write me a note I’d see this morning on the kitchen table, “Barry did it!”
Yes, Barry Bonds did it. The top three all-time home run hitters are now initialed as BAR. There are those who think that Barry should be barred from holding the record.
I thought Bob Ford summed it up in his Philadelphia Inquirer column this a.m., “…a player who has never tested positive for anything but surliness.”
There’s been a ton of words written about Barry and the alleged steroids use. Controversy sells newspapers and fills airways. Until proven differently, he’s innocent.
Yes, he is surly. If we faced all the media scrutiny he has, we might be surly too.
One thing no one can deny, the man can hit. Next for him is 3,000 hits. He’s 85 away from that historic level. His next double will be number 600.
From watching the replays and reading the papers today, the Giants did a great job in handling the historic moment. Bonds’ comments were perfect. Hank Aaron’s taped comments were awesome. Commissioner Bud Selig, who always seems to get criticized, called Bonds after the game and Barry acknowledged appreciation.
Bonds, Aaron and Babe Ruth played during different eras. There were fewer pitchers when Aaron and Ruth played so, in theory, they faced better quality pitching.
But, Bonds played in the era of bullpen specialists. It seems normal that a starting pitcher goes five innings and is followed by four others who work one inning each. In theory, Bonds faced as many pitchers in one game as Ruth did in five days.
Ruth played in an era when there were Sunday doubleheaders, days off on Monday, more day games and a road trip on a train. The farthest west he went was St. Louis or Chicago.
Bonds’ era includes a night game in New York, a jet ride west for a night game in San Francisco the next day.
In the end, Bonds set a record, one of the most revered records in all sports. Heck, records in football can’t come close to baseball records.
The massive fanfare about the record once again proves that baseball is still the national pastime and not past its time like some people say.
People will remember last night even if they slept through the historic occasion.