Barry Bonds 660 ties mays!

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mslacat
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Barry Bonds 660 ties mays!

Post by mslacat » Tue Apr 13, 2004 3:15 pm

OK I admit, the only way I like to watch baseball, is if I know a friend of mine (usually a
kid) is playing or the World Series is on television. But with Bonds tying Willie Mays 660 hits, I really thought
that all of the hoopla was pretty silly. He did not break May's record he TIED it! Lets
get excited when he Breaks it in a couple days or so! Now I do not know where my head
was at, but if I would have thought about it, I knew Hank Arron had the record for the most
home runs in a carrier, and he bettered The Babe's record to do it!
Willie May's record was for third place on the list! Third Place! Give me a break, talk
about manufacturing an event. Is baseball that much trouble that they need to resort to this.
Heck think about how many more hits Aaron, Mays and The Babe would have had if the
"Juice" was available to them!
Last edited by mslacat on Tue Apr 13, 2004 3:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Post by SonomaCat » Tue Apr 13, 2004 4:46 pm

Damn it, I just lost my whole post... I had a lot of random crap in that one, too.

I think the reason why this mark is what it is has little to do with Bonds now being #3 on the all-time list and has a lot more to do with the relationship between Bonds and Willie Mays. Mays is Bonds' godfather, and with Bobby Bonds dying last year and the family-like relationship the 3 men have had all their lives, this home run event takes on a very unique flavor. There wasn't much talk about Bonds' last leap in the all-time list (I think he passed up Lou Gehrig), and I don't think there would have been as much about this one were it any other person in the game other than Mays.



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Post by lifesapuntreturn » Tue Apr 13, 2004 8:32 pm

Yes, Mslacat, I think baseball is in enough trouble popularity-wise that they need to manufacture a "made for television" event like Bonds 660. A lot of major league markets have seen declining or level attendance for several years and tv ratings are down many places, too. Apparently kids are playing soccer these days instead of little league, too. I read an article a while back where some guy wrote that is was tough to even find many little league fields in his city (don't remember where it was) because all the old fields are either now soccer fields or they have been developed. Baseball seems to be fading as time passes.

But I also think BAC is accurate in identifying the Bonds/Mays personal connection as the big reason for all the hype over 660.

For my money, Hammerin' Hank Aaron will always be the best home run hitter, even if Bonds passes him on the list.



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Post by SonomaCat » Tue Apr 13, 2004 11:07 pm

Oooh... soccer. The unspoken 4th leg of the Axis of Evil. What's wrong with the kids today? How could they be foresaking baseball for... that.

Okay, I'm just a touch biased.



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Post by SonomaCat » Wed Apr 14, 2004 12:07 am

As something of a full disclosure on my biases on the Bonds topic, I was hoping to get home from work early enough to work a bit of the ballpark into my run tonight, and I was pretty pissed when I got home and found out that Barry had already hit the HR to put him into 3rd alone. He hit it right over the path I would have taken on my run (although I think the ball hit the water tonight, so I wouldn't have had a chance to actually get it, but it would have been cool to be watching through the RF fence). The ballpark is only a couple blocks from where I live -- I hope to spend a lot of time there this summer.



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Post by mslacat » Wed Apr 14, 2004 8:42 am

I understand Mays is Bonds's uncle, but to stop a game and hold a press conference because you tied your uncle for third place! Take him out to dinner, do it on your own time, and for all you folks who got sucked into it, IT WAS THIRD PLACE. In 2 years it will mean nothing, when he passes The Babe and then Aaron.

That is unless in the next few months Bonds start losing weight and shrivels up to his weight of about 5-7 years ago.



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Post by SonomaCat » Wed Apr 14, 2004 8:58 am

MslaCat: I guarantee that virtually no one who was watching the game, and particularly those at the game, minded the ceremony at all. In fact, they would have been upset if it wouldn't have happened. The square outside of the ballpark (I can't get used to calling it SBC) is adorned with a huge statue of Willie Mays, and he is an icon in San Francisco. This moment was a big one for Giant fans, and apparently many other baseball fans around the country.

Baseball is a game of ceremony -- that's why is has such a deliberate pace to begin with. Things like this are expected. Stats of all kinds are celebrated, even if they aren't superlative stats. With as many years of history as baseball has under its belt (starting with the exclusively white league of Ruth and crew), it is probably okay to celebrate the minor milestones as you aren't just being compared against a few others -- you are being compared against over 100 years of players.

And I wish we all could shrivel up and go back down to our rookie weights. Time is cruel that way.



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Post by mslacat » Wed Apr 14, 2004 10:09 am

Name one other event, record, or accomplishment, where someone was celibrated in this fashion for achieving 3rd place! Baseball has enough silly (albeit important to some) traditions that it does not need to manufactor more. What next are we going to held on the edge of our seats by seasons end watching a player hoping he can finish above .375 (its almost .400) to end the year.

If I shrivel up to my college days, weight it will be becuase I stopped eating food. Bonds case it is a totally different matter.



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Post by SonomaCat » Wed Apr 14, 2004 11:11 am

MslaCat: If it makes thousands/millions of people happy, and inconveniences nobody (turn the channel), why not celebrate? It's a historic milestone on the path to one of the most revered records in sports shared by two of the best baseball players of all time, who also happen to be very close to each other. Why on earth not cherish that moment?

As for the steroid thing -- Bonds is definitely not on the juice this season (if he ever was) as they are being tested now, and his weight doesn't seem to be any less now that it has been over the last couple of seasons. Who knows, maybe lifting weights and working out fanatically (which he does do year round, or else he wouldn't be able to play at his level at his age) really do make one stronger.



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Post by mslacat » Wed Apr 14, 2004 11:41 am

Well BAC I believe at this point in our discussions according message board proceedure is that I am now suppost to call you a reall mean name and make fun of your mother for disagree with and then say somthing with the word suck in it, but as you all know I can be lazy at times so I guess this is the best I can do:

Baseball Sucks!
Last edited by mslacat on Wed Apr 14, 2004 11:42 am, edited 1 time in total.



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Post by SonomaCat » Wed Apr 14, 2004 11:48 am

mslacat: Oh, if we were having a "typical" conversation, we would have called each other names long before this. In true Giants fan form, I would probably have to accuse you of being a no-good blankety-blank Dodger fan, yada, yada, yada.



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Post by ZifCat52 » Wed Apr 14, 2004 12:26 pm

One more celebratory thing form Bond's homers 660 and 661, ESPN interviewed the guy who caught the 660 ball and made a big deal of the fact that he gave the ball back to Barry Bonds. They then discovered that he caught the second one as well the next night. He gave up the seats behind home plate he got as part of the trade of the ball and went out in his kayak and caought the second ball. Amazing!!


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Post by lifesapuntreturn » Wed Apr 14, 2004 8:53 pm

BAC wrote:
Oooh... soccer. The unspoken 4th leg of the Axis of Evil. What's wrong with the kids today? How could they be foresaking baseball for... that.

Okay, I'm just a touch biased.
Wasn't trying to dis soccer. It's not for me but if kids enjoy it, more power to 'em. I was just using it as an example as to why I think the popularity of baseball is waning. Kids are playing soccer instead of baseball so when they get older, they are less likely to attend or watch baseball games, or learn how to read box scores, or how to keep score.

Interestingly, many A and AA teams have seen level attendance or growth the past several years because they have made it a family experience and not just a baseball game. Between innings "contests" or entertainment, promos, fan/player interaction, post-game fireworks, etc. all contribute to that atmosphere, in addition to being much more affordable for many people.

My age will show here but I also think fans enjoy watching the A and AA kids who are trying to make "The Show" do little things like run out the routine ground ball to shortstop, hustle on and off the field and do everything they can to stay in the lineup even if they're a little dinged or feeling under the weather. This is contrasted to many big leaguers who can't be bothered with doing anything but running half-heartedly down to first or sit out a game or two with a strained index finger from dialing their cell phone.

Of course, when the major league commissioner decides that the All-Star game should end in a tie, that doesn't help their image either. Yeah, it's just an all-star game, but not only is there no crying in baseball, there are no ties in baseball either.



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Bonds

Post by DCC2MSU » Thu Apr 15, 2004 8:39 pm

I am a huge baseball fan and I think it is great that he was honored in a way to include Willie Mays - someone often considered the greatest ever and his godfather, not uncle. Baseball does an excellent job recognizing it's rich tradition (which no sport can match) and I think that is part of the appeal it has to most people. The fact that it moves him into 3rd place is more impressive when you consider the gap between Mays 660 and Frank Robinson at 586 in fifth.

I am far from a fan of Bonds for many reasons, but I do respect the way he is including Mays just as McGwire did with the Maris family.



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Post by geogfather » Thu Apr 15, 2004 9:34 pm

The thing is though, if left handed Mays could have played his career in todays tiny stadiums, (i.e. pac bell or whatever it is called now is only 307 down the right field line) Mays would have hit over 800 homers.

As for Aaron being the greatest homerun hitter of all time. His record is a product of longevity(sp?). He played 23 years. He also holds records for most at bats, and games played. Was he good? certainly, he was great. But was he the best HR hitter ever? No. Sure, Ruth Played 21 years, but keep in mind he was a pitcher didnt hit every game for the first 6 years. In fact, until his last season with boston, he only had about 50 at bats a year. He won 89 games. ( he actually won like 94 I think ccasue the yankees would use him in extremely rare cases) and had a career ERA of 2.28.

As much as I absolutly hate the yankees, babe ruth is not only the greatest hitter of all time, you could make the case for him being the greatest player of all time, although I think that honor probably goes to Willie Mays. or possibly Ty Cobb, with 23 seasons over .300 and 3 seasons over 400.


Just my 2 cents



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Post by BelgradeBobcat » Fri Apr 16, 2004 3:40 pm

The thing that bugs me about Bonds is his Star Wars Storm Trooper elbow and shin guards-I'm sure it takes all the pitcher's fun out of beaning him when he crowds the plate.

In the more general discussion on the health of baseball...who's got time to watch an entire game? Good grief it's 3 or 4 hours maybe more. Really I'm amazed baseball draws as well as it does considering rising ticket prices, huge number of dates, incredible number of meaningless games (especially late in the season), etc.



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Post by SonomaCat » Sat Apr 17, 2004 11:50 am

geogfather: In defense of Pac Bell/SBC/"The Ballpark", that right field line is only 308, but it veers out at a pretty extreme angle and turns into a pretty deep outfield pretty quickly. It also has a 12 foot high fence and a pretty nasty wind blowing the ball down in that direction. Not many people other than Barry hit homers in that direction, which always surprises me. I think it is truly a lot harder to put the ball out there than it looks. Pac Bell is known more as a pitchers park than most. I don't doubt, though, that Willie would have done better in today's parks than some of the massive ones that used to exist, though. He may well have hit 800.

As an aside, I stopped by the ballpark last night during my run and spent an inning in that right field wall where you can watch the game for free. I have a feeling that I will be spending a lot of time down there on game nights. It's just such a fun atmosphere, even for just a ten minute stop during the evening. Bonds walked when I was watching, but apparently he hit a homer in the 9th.

Off to the game (paying this time) this afternoon....



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