Sunday, May 07, 2006

So now here comes Barry, with a chance to tie the Babe.

BIIGGGG swing and a foul back off reliever Aaron Fultz, an ex teammate.

Carlos is still getting interviewed and Barry is trying to make Carlos' home run ball null and void. A ball and a check swing strike makes it 2-2 ... and then the count runs full...

Swing and a miss ... Down Goes Bonds! Down Goes Bonds!

Goodbye, Philly. His homer show goes back to where it belongs -- San Francisco. The only city where Bonds seems welcome these days.

You people in the blogosphere, know that I'm not making this up...
We have a new celebrity in Philly town, and his name is Carlos (we have the right spelling now) Oliveras. The catcher of Barry Bonds' 713th career home run at Citizens Bank Park a short time ago is currently surrounded by national media back in the press lunch room, where usually only a feeding frenzy takes place.

Carlos is an Airman 1st class, stationed at McGuire Air Force Base in Burlington County, New Jersey. Carlos is a polite 25-year-old gentleman, even respectful of the people around him right now, which quite frankly is amazing.

Anyway, the soldier, a native of Guamica, Puerto Rico, says the ball bounced right to him. So he has good hands, but he also is a pretty bright guy.

"I put the ball between my legs," said Carlos. "People were yelling at me to throw it back and I didn't want to."

When everybody around him continued to urge him to chuck Barry's homer ball, Oliveras said, "I was getting nervous. Scared."

Finally, the Phillies Security Force, a division of Homeland Security's South Philly office, surrounded him and brought him to safety.

Going to was his friend, Charles Beutler, also an airman, who says he knew exactly what he was doing when he got the tickets for right field on a Bonds night.

"It was like buying a lottery ticket," he said.

This just in ... the guy who wrangled Bonds' 713th homer is revealed ... and then whisked away by Phillies security.

Maybe he's in a holding cell getting grilled right now by Dallas Green. Or perhaps they're trying to buy the ball off him. One other unofficial explanation had it that the fan with the lucky hands was taken away willingly, mainly because fans around him were hassling him about not throwing the ball back onto the field.

Something like ... "Yo Dude, it's not like that one's worth anything! Give it up!"

No go ... so the fan says "Let's go."

Either way, Mr. 713 will not be named by the Barry Blog Master ... at least not until he's released from custody.

Wait ... another update. He's Carlos Alavaros (we'll correct that spelling later) and it's been announced that he's available to the media in the press dining area right now.

Carlos must be a hell of a cook.

Giants rooters here in the press box say that might have been Bonds' first home run to right field of the season. Tough to get those big arms around that fast.

But they put a little power behind that shot. The Citizens Bank Park people are breaking out the tape measure.

As Bonds trotted toward home, his mother Pat Bonds was seen cheering from her first-row seat, next to team exec Larry Baer. All's well now ... except for after the game. This likely means Bonds will finally have something to say to his adoring public and the media afterward.

He's one away.

It's Bonds time in the sixth. He just one-handed a foul ball by Pedro Feliz back into the crowd, a kid caught it, and the crowd urged the kid to throw it back.

Fat chance.

Now Barry's up. A ball and then a foul, then another ball. Count is 2-and -1 and BOOOMMMM!!!!

Off the McDonald's sign on the upper deck of right field, No .713.

The Giants, limping along like a tired old team as the season slogs toward the quarter pole, go to the top of the fourth in search of relief.

Meanwhile, fans at Citizens Bank Park had some comic relief in the second inning when Chase Utley's blooping single fooled left fielder Barry Bonds and fell in front of him for an RB I single.

Now Barry gets a segment of revenge. He just came up and stroked the first pitch from Jon Lieber past short-right fielder Utley and into right field for a single.

The boos rained, the Phillies' shift didn't work. Bonds is now 2 for 7 with three walks in the series.

As a followup to a couple of notorious signages from Friday night, those wacky young guys featuring the Michelin Man get up with a sign saying "Barry with San Fran," with his skinny buddy in Pirates drag and a sign saying "Barry with Pittsburgh" were back.

So was the long banner in left, albeit with an expanded message.

When Bonds went out to left field for the bottom of the first inning, fans in the stands unfurled a banner across three sections of seats that read, "Ruth did it on hot dogs and beer, Aaron did it with class. How did YOU do it?"
The eyes in the message were dotted with asterisks, and the O in YOU appeared to be a picture of a round face.

And now, back to the game...

Bobby Abreu's RBI single and Pat Burrell's homer deep into the hedges beyond the center field fence spotted the Phils to a 3-0 lead against Matt Morris, yet another graybeard on this old Giants team.

As for the Giants, they got on the board in the second on a home run by Mark Sweeney.

So now we roll into the first inning, and here's Barry, two outs and a runner on second ... and naturally, there's goes the call for him to be put on first.

Intentional walk No. 2 and his third walk overall of the series. Hey, uh, somebody in the marketing department tell Charlie it's about more than just winning games, OK?

Now that the first real chorus of PhillyFanspeak has been heard upon Barry Bonds' introduction, let's kick into our third installment of Barry Does Philly...

The pre-game excitement centered around Bonds' snoozing in the clubhouse. He came in, the hundred or so media buzzards stirred. He sat by his locker, one of them approached and reminded him of days gone by and they talked a little. Others held back, then Barry seemed to invite them into his world ... pulling another chair over by his.

Alas, that was only to rest his aching feet -- either that or to slightly alleviate the seemingly chronic right knee pain that has made him play like a shadow of the player he was even two weeks ago during this series.

And then ... the King of Pop rested right there. Dropped off to sleep while a Dave Chappelle special aired on the clubhouse' TV -- might have been Barry's DVD, but our many clubhouse sources couldn't confirm it -- and there he went, fast asleep.

Moving on outside, ESPN people were crawling around Citizens Bank Park like fleas on an autograph hound. It truly made one shiver.

Someone had shaken Barry, because he came out stretching, getting warmed up and listening to the lovely chants of CHEATER! and other pleasantries. While this was going on, Larry Baer, the Giants' executive vice president in charge of joining the team on the road now that it has lost six of its last seven games, tried not to look disgusted as he discussed this visit to Philly.

Said Larry: "I think they’re professionals I think they can play through it. Nobody would be happier than 25 guys and Barry and the front office and everybody if he’d hit home runs and it would be over with by now."

Saturday, May 06, 2006

For a second straight night, the Giants PR department was left to say Barry left without a word, even though he muscled a pop-fly single in between three flailing Phils in the second game of this series.

But after a 4-1 win that was the Phillies' seventh in a row ... (Charlie Manuel, Manager of the Year?) ... Bonds is stuck at 712, he seems to be getting tired of the media attention he's trying to ignore, and the fan reaction to him hasn't really relented.

Then again, it's been only vocal reaction. So far.

Anyway, the fans did manage to sell Citizens Bank Park out tonight with a huge walk-up crowd that promptly froze under a sudden north wind ... which was responsible for Barry's lone hit.

One more night here to make history ... or leave everyone without a word again.

By the way, the Phillies' 3, 4 and 5 hitters were a combined 0-for-11 tonight. So Barry's not the only one that's cold.