Bonds connects for No. 758 and third homer this week, but Pirates beat Giants 8-7
Bonds connected for career homer No. 758 and his third clout of the week and Davis singled, doubled, tripled and scored a career-best four runs Friday night in the San Francisco Giants’ 8-7 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Adam LaRoche hit a solo homer in the fourth for Pittsburgh, which rallied with six runs in the eighth. The Pirates got four straight singles to start the inning, then later a sacrifice fly by Jack Wilson off loser Vinnie Chulk (4-4), Nate McLouth’s tying RBI double and a go-ahead, two-run single by Freddy Sanchez.
“I have to give our guys an awful lot of credit to come back in the manner they did,” Pirates manager Jim Tracy said. “That’s been an Achilles’ heel for us. We turned it around with a huge inning.”
Bonds sent a 3-2 pitch from former teammate Matt Morris into the right-field arcade for a two-run shot, giving the Giants a 3-1 lead. The fan who retrieved the ball was quickly whisked away so the ball could be authenticated.
Fans jumped to their feet as Bonds made his third home-run trot this week in the club’s waterfront ballpark—and in the first of five straight games between the teams, including a makeup doubleheader Monday in Pittsburgh. Bonds broke Hank Aaron’s record with No. 756 on Tuesday, then had a splash-hit homer into McCovey Cove for his 757th the very next night.
Bonds was scheduled to sit out of the starting lineup in Saturday’s game.
“He’s swinging well,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “The fresher we keep him, the better player we’re going to get.”
Bonds hit his first career homer off Morris, who became the 448th different pitcher to give up a longball to Bonds. The right-hander was dealt by San Francisco to the Pirates at the trading deadline for Davis, a speedy outfielder who contributed plenty against his old club.
“I had so much Adrenalin and emotion built up for this game it affected my stuff,” Morris said. “I felt the curve. I’m sure Barry felt it, too. And now I’m in the book.”
The 43-year-old Bonds received a standing ovation when he came out to play left field in the top of the fourth and he tipped and waved his cap with his left hand.
He was replaced before the top of the eighth by Kevin Frandsen.
Davis singled, doubled and tripled in order to get a chance for a natural cycle but walked in the seventh before scoring his fourth run on Bonds’ sacrifice fly. He reached on a fielder’s choice in the eighth and also stole a base.
“I did realize it after my third at-bat,” Davis said of his opportunity for the cycle, something he’s never done. “My fourth at-bat I was thinking about it.”
In his return to San Francisco, Morris received some boos and cheers when he batted leading off the third. He acknowledged the trade caught him by surprise because it wasn’t to a contending team. He allowed five runs and seven hits in six innings, walked five and didn’t have a strikeout.
The fans booed when Morris threw a third straight ball to Bonds in the fifth, then let him have it again moments later when the seven-time NL MVP was walked. With his 116th free pass, Bonds exceeded his total of 115 walks from last year. He drew another walk to start the sixth.
There’s not nearly the same attention on the slugger now that he’s passed Hammerin’ Hank’s 33-year-old record.
“So peaceful,” Bonds said, sitting in the dugout before taking batting practice. He compared the media frenzy following his chase to “a family reunion where nobody goes home.”
Russ Ortiz was activated from the disabled list before the game to make the start and was in position to win for the first time since April 20 in just his sixth start of the season and 10th appearance overall after two stints on the DL.
He hadn’t pitched since June 4 at Philadelphia and hadn’t started since May 1 because of a right forearm strain. He allowed two runs and four hits in five innings.
LaRoche hit his second career homer in San Francisco, where his father, Dave, gave up two homers in 1973 for the Cubs. … San Francisco played in front of its 31st sellout crowd dating to a July 6 game at St. Louis. … Davis had his fifth stolen base for San Francisco and 10th overall.