The Blog Squad

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Barry Bonds: You Make the Call

Barry Bonds steps in. AND the windup. The pitch. Here’s a high fly ball, deep to right. It’s gone. Bighead Bonds is now the home-run chump. Boo, America! The most hallowed of all sports records has been spit on.

Now that’s how I would call the Cheater’s historic home run. I know, I know, he hasn’t been caught using steroids and even if he did use performance-enhancing drugs, it was during an era when they were not so illegal.

Spare me any defense of Bonds. I don’t want to be asked how steroids help a batter hit the ball. Guns don’t kill people. People kill people, right? Give me a break. We will never agree.
Perhaps the most intriguing part of this chase is how broadcasters will call No. 756, particularly San Francisco Giants play-by-play men Jon Miller and Dave Flemming.

The two have had months — more than that, a couple of years — to think of how they would call the historic shot.

I spoke with Richmond Braves’ radio broadcaster Robert Fish and asked him how he would approach the call. This is his answer: “Here's the pitch ... Bonds swings, and there's a high fly ball, deep to right field. Back it goes … IT’S GONE! There it is! Number 756 for Bonds. One of baseball’s most hallowed records is broken, and Barry Bonds is now the new all-time home-run champion.”

Notice the similarities? Except Fish does not believe steroids should be an issue at that moment.

“I think the game and the event is separate from the steroid allegations and the cloud of suspicion that Bonds is under,” Fish says. “So the call of the actual event has to focus on just that, in my opinion.”

Now, don’t think for a minute Fish is a Bonds fan. He’s just a professional.

“I’m not rooting for Bonds to break the record, personally,” Fish says. “I was a huge (Hammerin’ Hank) Aaron fan growing up, and had no problems with him breaking Babe Ruth’s record, but Bonds is a different subject. As I said, we don’t know really what he’s done, but he’s done something to gain an edge. It’s too bad really, because early in his career he was a very talented player who didn’t need to ‘cheat.’ ”

Here are a couple of links to other opinions of play-by-play guys. Pay close attention to what Cincinnati Reds broadcaster Marty Brennaman says. I love it!

And for those of you who forgot or never heard it. Here’s a call by Milo Hamilton that will make you appreciate a true home-run champion: “Henry Aaron, in the second inning walked and scored. He’s sittin’ on 714. Here’s the pitch by Downing. Swinging. There’s a drive into left-center field. That ball is gonna beeeee outta here! It’s gone! It’s 715! There is a new home-run champion of all-time … and it’s Henry Aaron!”

Brings chills to my spine.

My 21-month-old daughter has a biting problem. She’s been written up at school twice and has left her mark on my wife’s arm. I’ve tried to teach her biting is bad by giving her a timeout whenever it happens.

“Do you bite your friends?” I ask.

“No,” she replies.

But just to be sure she understands, I ask her a follow-up question.

“Do you love Daddy?”


Hmmmm. I wonder if she is telling the truth or has no idea what I’m talking about.

If anyone wants to offer advice, I’ll take it.

Since we’re talking steroids, maybe Bonds should use this dog as an excuse for his inflated body. The slugger could say it’s a genetic disorder. —Gage Harter


At Wed Jul 18, 09:57:00 PM EDT, Anonymous Hollywood said...

As a HUGE baseball fan, my hope is that Bonds gets one shy of Aaron's record, then is indicted on steroid charges and misses the record.

Despite alleged steroid use, Bonds is still one of baseball's finest hitters, but cheaters can't be allowed to "win." If Bonds breaks the record and it is allowed to stand (which it will be), Pete Rose should be in the Hall of Fame.

At Mon Jul 23, 04:02:00 PM EDT, Blogger ESPN said...

ESPN cordially invites all baseball fans to a Live Broadcast television show “Beyond 756,” a town hall discussion focusing on Barry Bonds, his quest to break baseball’s all-time home run record and his legacy. We need your immediate RSVP if you would like to attend this invitation only special live national broadcast.

The show on Wednesday, July 25, will feature a panel discussion of esteemed sports experts. As part of the show, audience members are encouraged to ask questions and comment on the positive and controversial aspects of Bonds, his legacy and the homerun record.

Audience members must arrive at the Palace of Fine Arts Theater, 3301 Lyon St., between 1 and 2 p.m. on Wednesday, July 25, for “Beyond 756.” The show will begin at 3 p.m. It will pre-empt that evening's SportsCenter show.

To attend, please send an email to: or call 415.225.7575 to RSVP by Tuesday, July 24. Be sure to include your name, e-mail address and phone number so that we can reach you. Walk-ups are also welcome, but seating will be available on a first come, first served basis.


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