Barry Bonds hit home run number 756 on Tuesday, August 7, 2007 against the Washington Nationals at AT&T Park in San Francisco, surpassing Hall-of-Famer slugger Hank Aaron to become the all-time leader. Bonds' incredible miletstone was captured in front of his hometown fans, his family, his friends, godfather Willie Mays, along with a couple of representatives from major league baseball's front office, most notably Vice President of Operations Frank Robinson.
After he stepped on homeplate, Bonds was greeted by one of his sons, a Giant ballboy, as he kissed the sky & looked upward to thank his father, the late Giant superstar Bobby Bonds. The troubled relationship between Bonds & his father - the first player to hit 30 home runs & steal 30 stolen bases in the same season - matured as the latter eventually lost his battle with cancer at age 57. Bonds' beautiful wife, along with his two other kids came out of the stands to later greet him.
Controversry has surrounded Bonds for several years as he's been accused by various media personnel, current & former ballplayers, as well as prominent sportswriters of using peformance-enhancing drugs to augment his game. One of the poignant moments of the evening came minutes after Bonds' homer when the Giants' screen showed Hank Aaron offering his personal congratulations for Bonds' remarkable achievement, legitimizing his struggle for dignity & self-respect with a possibly polarized public. In a recent interview with HBO's Bob Costas, Aaron stated emphatically Bonds has not been "proven guilty of any wrongdoing."
A few years ago, Senator George Mitchell, with the support of Commissioner Bud Selig, led an arduous congressional investigation into illegal steroid use among baseball players. Moreover, former Oakland A's star Jose Canseco - the first player to hit 40 home runs & steal 40 bases in the same season - wrote a scathing best-selling book naming Mark McGuire, Rafael Palmeiro & Sammy Sosa, among many others, along with Bonds as a culprit in what some have labeled his asterisk record.
During the press conference, a relaxed & smiling Bonds was asked if he thought his home run record "was tainted." Bonds responded with frustration, "where did that conversation come from? No, my record is not tainted." In fact, Selig called Bonds after the game to congratulate Bonds, which Bonds publicly acknowledged as a welcome gesture of respect. Selig has been non-commital when asked if he thinks Bonds has broken the law, yet later admitted he hoped there'd be some "resolution after all of the investigation works its way through."
- mark j. tuggle
- harlem, usa
- same-gender-loving contemporary descendant of enslaved africans. community activist, feminist, health educator, independent filmmaker, mentor, playwright, poet & spiritual being. featured at, in & on africana.com, afrikan poetry theatre, angel herald, bejata dot com, bet tonight with tavis smiley, blacklight online, black noir, brooklyn moon cafe, gmhc's barbershop, klmo-fm, lgbt community services center, longmoor productions, nuyorican poets cafe, our corner, poz, pulse, rolling out new york, rush arts gallery, saint veronica's church, schomburg center for research in black culture, sexplorations, the citizen, the new york times, the soundz bar, the trenton times, the village voice, upn news, uzuri, venus, vibe, wbai-fm, wnyc-fm & wqht-fm. volunteered with adodi, bailey house, inc., black men's xchange-new york, colorofchange.org, drug policy alliance, east harlem tutorial program, imagenation film & music festival, presente.org, save darfur coalition, the enough project, the osborne association, the sledge group & your black world. worked on films with maurice jamal & heather murphy. writing student of phil bertelsen & ed bullins. firstname.lastname@example.org.