Bonds bonked in head

BOB ELLIOTT -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:06 AM ET

MILWAUKEE -- Barry Bonds was homerless and hitless.

Well, sort of.

The San Francisco Giants slugger made a rookie mistake of leaning too far forward while resting on the batting cage railing last night at Miller Park.

And just as one of Bonds' 712 career home runs brought opposing pitchers to their knees in anguish, second baseman Kevin Frandsen fouled a ball into the netting, sending Bonds reeling.

The ball hit Bonds on the forehead before the Giants beat the Milwaukee Brewers 2-0 before 17,358 fans, many booing him every time he was introduced.

Bonds did show he can take a punch after he was hit square.

"The ball caught him flush," said coach Willie Upshaw, who was standing near the plate, talking with manager Felipe Alou and Bonds.

Bonds first yelled in pain when he suffered his only hit of the evening, then went to a knee and laid on his back behind the batting cage.

Assistant trainer Dave Groeschner and head trainer Stan Conte examined Bonds, checking to see whether his pupils had dilated.

Bonds was taken to the clubhouse and he was back 10 minutes later to take his turn during batting practice. As he waited his turn, backup catcher Todd Greene walked over and offered him a catcher's mask to wear for protection.

Bonds grounded out to end the first, popped up to end the third and struck out to the end the sixth against ex-Blue Jay David Bush. He popped up facing lefty reliever Jorge de la Rosa to end the game, keeping Bonds two home runs behind Babe Ruth for second on the career list.

Fans booed Bonds every at-bat and when the Giants were in the field, fans chanted "Barry sucks! Barry sucks." In the crowd, fans wore yellow T-shirts that read: "Walk Bonds Every Time."

The Giants are in for a two-game series against the Brewers in commissioner Bud Selig's hometown, but he won't be attending either game. Career home run king Hank Aaron hit 410 of his record 755 homers wearing a Milwaukee uniform.

Selig sent his regrets, saying passing Aaron would be one thing, and how Major League Baseball celebrates "genuine records."

Moving past Babe Ruth's 714 career homers into second seems genuine. Distancing himself from Bonds may be one reason to be elsewhere.

"People can celebrate whatever way they want," Bonds said. "How can I be offended? The questions you are asking are not fair to Bud Selig. I don't know what else is going on in his life."

Selig was busy yesterday, finalizing the sale of the Washington Nationals. Today, he flies to New York to speak at the Boys and Girls Club, MLB's No. 1 charity, a speaking engagement booked a year and a half ago.

"Why should I be disappointed? I'm not insulted?" Bonds said.

Bonds has hit four homers this season and hasn't been able to pull a pitch deep.

"I suck right now," Bonds said. "You guys don't have enough tape in your machines for me to tell you everything wrong with my swing. I'm not like I should be."

Bonds, hitting .250 with four homers and 11 RBIs after 23 games, is bothered by a sore right knee and left elbow.

"I've played with bone chips for a long time," Bonds said. "The cold weather bothers me the most."

Bonds needs three homers to pass Ruth, 46 to pass Aaron.

"The biggest record for me personally was passing my godfather Willie Mays at 660," Bonds said. "Babe is great and he changed the way the game was played. And it is Hank Aaron's record, but passing Willie was big for me."

Bonds said he was not the one writing all the stories about drug concerns.

"I forgive all of you guys," Bonds told reporters. "I hope nothing bad ever happens to any of you.

"I pray for you."


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