The San Francisco Giants’ chances at making the playoffs continue to get slimmer, but their star left fielder has already had a memorable stretch run.
After tying Hank Aaron’s National League home run record, Barry Bonds will look to help boost the Giants’ flagging playoff hopes when they continue a four-game series with the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday.
Bonds hit his 733rd career homer and drove in a season-high six runs Friday, but San Francisco lost 13-12. The defeat was the seventh in nine games for the Giants (75-78), who trail the Los Angeles Dodgers by 5 1/2 games in the NL wild-card race.
Bonds’ three-run homer in the sixth inning off Milwaukee reliever Chris Spurling was his 25th of the season 11 of which have come in August and September. He is 22 homers from Aaron’s all-time record of 755. Bonds added two doubles, giving him 586 to move past Rafael Palmeiro and into 14th place on the career list.
Bonds said the tying the NL record was special “because it is the only league I’ve played in.”
“It just barely went over,” he said. “I feel good right now.”
It was the sixth time in Bonds’ 20-year career he’s had six RBIs in a game and it tied the Giants’ season high for an individual player. Pedro Feliz also drove in six runs on June 15 at Arizona. Bonds had not had six RBIs in a game since Aug. 29, 2004, at Atlanta.
His career high is seven RBIs, accomplished Oct. 1, 1993, at the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Bonds would not say whether he’ll return next season to try and break Aaron’s major league record.
“The only thing I want to do is go home after the season,” he said. “I’m not even thinking about next year. I just want to go home and watch my son’s football games.”
San Francisco will start Noah Lowry (7-10, 4.70 ERA), who is 0-3 with a 16.87 ERA in his last three outings. The left-hander gave up a season-worst nine runs and nine hits in 1 1-3 innings of a 20-8 loss to the Colorado Rockies on Monday.
Lowry lost his only career start against Milwaukee, giving up four runs and three hits in 5 1-3 innings in a 5-1 loss on July 31, 2005.
Milwaukee (71-83) will counter with Chris Capuano (11-11, 3.67 ERA), who has lost his last three decisions. The left-hander gave up three runs and eight hits in seven innings, but did not factor in the decision in a 4-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday.
Capuano is 1-2 with a 3.92 ERA in three starts and one relief appearance in his career against the Giants.
David Bell’s infield single in the eighth inning Friday drove in the go-ahead run for Milwaukee, which rallied from deficits of 4-0 and 12-10.
Both teams sent nine players to the plate in the first inning, the first time this season that has happened in the major leagues. The last time it occurred was May 11, 2005, in a game between the Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees.