Barry Bonds came close Wednesday, but he still has one to go.
Bonds went 0-for-4 with a first-inning flyout to the right-field warning track Wednesday in the Giants’ 8-1 rout of the Brewers, leaving him with 699 career homers. He is attempting to join Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714) as the only players in history with at least 700.
“He missed his one shot today,” Giants manager Felipe Alou said.
When Bonds reaches that historic milestone, Alou hopes the public’s perception of the surly slugger will change.
“Some of the great things that this man does would be finally and truly recognized,” Alou said.
Alou played with Aaron, and he would like to see Bonds respected in the same manner as the sport’s all-time home run king.
“Hank was a guy who was not Mr. anything. He was Mr. Gentleman,” Alou said. “Even to this day he’s hoping that somebody would break his record. But not everyone’s the same. … People come from different environments.
“I don’t know why Barry is the way he is or why Hank was the way he was. And it would be impossible to make everybody likable to the public.”
Though Bonds has already broken his own major league record with 205 walks this season, Brewers manager Ned Yost said he expects his pitchers to continue challenging the six-time NL MVP.
“My whole philosophy is if he’s going to hurt you to a point where you can’t recover, then you can’t pitch to him,” Yost said. “Just let common sense rule. In reality, 6.25 times out of 10, he’s going to make an out. Statistics say that.”
Since Aug. 4, batters immediately following Bonds’ walks have hit .396 (19-for-48) with 20 RBIs. He has walked three times in the series’ first two games, and the Giants have scored in all three innings.
While Bonds did not connect Wednesday, Brett Tomko pitched a four-hitter, and J.T. Snow went 2-for-4 with a homer and five RBIs to help the Giants maintain their half-game lead over the Chicago Cubs in the NL wild-card race.
Gary Bennett had an RBI double for Milwaukee, which has lost four of its last five.