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Barry Bonds is inching closer and closer to the most hallowed record in baseball and is now 10 shy of tying Hank Aaron’s record of 755 home runs.
Bonds now stands at 745 and is continuing to hit bombs at a torrid pace. He has now hit 11 home runs on the season, which leads the National League, and is averaging a homer every 7.2 at bats or every two to three games.
At that rate, some estimate that the record will be broken between mid-to-late June so you can bet that the road games at Boston and Milwaukee, as well as the home games around that time, are already sold out by now.
In his pursuit of the all-time record, Bonds is also moving up other hallowed lists as well. He recently passed Cardinals legend Stan Musial for fourth place on the all-time RBI list with 1,953. He is also now in third place for the most runs scored in baseball history with 2,176.
As he gets closer, there is clearly a division among baseball fans regarding whether or not to root for or pray against Bonds breaking the record. In a recent ESPN/ABC News poll, 52 percent of baseball fans are rooting against him while 37 percent want him to support it. However, more Black fans (74 percent) are rooting for Bonds as opposed to White fans (28 percent) and more Black fans (46 percent to 25 percent) feel that he has been treated unfairly during the chase.
It is a sign that as Bonds grows closer to making history, many different elements will be a part of the discussion, including steroids and race. It will be the No. 1 topic of baseball until it happens and it’s safe to say that it will remain an issue throughout the summer.
Regardless how you feel about Bonds’ character or his personality, this is fact: He has never tested positive for steroids nor failed a drug test during his career. This fact was lost on Red Sox hurler Curt Schilling, who attacked him last week for using steroids and being an unfaithful husband.
There is no secret that personality-wise, Bonds is not the greatest guy in the world. However, since he has not failed a drug test, Schilling’s claims have no merit and are merely one man’s opinion, although it is probably the opinion of many.
No matter what, there is no doubt in my mind that Barry Bonds and the San Francisco Giants will be must-see TV throughout the summer and in a baseball season where few stories have stood out so far, you will be sure not to miss an episode.
The Giants travel to Bay Area-rival Oakland this weekend in a three-day series at McAfee Coliseum.