Milestones in season

BOB ELLIOTT, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 7:37 AM ET

'Tis the home run season.

Soon Barry Bonds will pass Hank Aaron for the career lead with his 756th.

Sammy Sosa of the Texas Rangers has hit his 600th.

Frank Thomas of the Blue Jays hit his 500th on Thursday afternoon.

Sultan of Swat David Vincent points out that, besides Bonds passing Aaron, we could have a player reach the 600-homer mark and three or four reach the 500 this season.

Besides Thomas, others closing in on the same mark. Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees has 492 heading into the weekend while Jim Thome of the Chicago White Sox has 482 and Manny Ramirez of the Boston Red Sox has 481.

Three times since 1967 have two sluggers joined the 500 homer club. In 1967, Hall of Famers Mickey Mantle of the Yanks hit his 500th and Eddie Mathews of the Astros did the same 61 days later.

In 1971, it was another set of Hall of Famers, Harmon Killebrew of the Twins and Frank Robinson of the Orioles, 34 days later.

Sosa, then with the Cubs, and Rafael Palmeiro of the Rangers hit their 500th homers 37 days apart in 2003.

Thomas won the home run derby at the 1995 all-star game in Arlington, Tex. The next night, he became the first White Sox player to homer in the all-star game.

BUNTING AND RUNNING

Colorado Rockies centre fielder Willy Taveras has established a franchise record with 26 bunt singles, two more than Juan Pierre had in 2002.

Taveras had 21 bunt hits in '06 and 30 the year before, when he was with the Houston Astros.

The highest bunt single total in the majors since 1974 was 42 by Brett Butler of the Dodgers in 1992.

FOOL'S GOLD

One Chicago Cubs broadcaster said this week that Alfonso Soriano has given the team Gold Glove defence since moving to left field.

Soriano has been throwing out runners, recording his 10th assist in 57 games on Tuesday, giving him 32 in less than a year and a half since moving over to left with Washington in 2006. That's twice as many as any other major league left fielder. Detroit's Craig Monroe has 16, followed by Pittsburgh's Jason Bay with 15.

ALL-STAR BOUND

Tristan Pompey of Mississauga has won a berth in the Pepsi Pitch, Hit & Run contest to be held during all-star game festivities at AT&T Park in San Francisco next week.

Pompey earned the right to compete at the Rogers Centre on June 24.

He had to beat the three other finalists in his group and place in the top four among champs from 29 other cities.

OUR RUNNERS-UP

Our minor leaguer of the week is Sebastien Boucher of Ottawa in the Seattle system. Also up for consideration were: Montreal infielder Emmanuel Garcia who hit .393 (11-for-28) for class-A St. Lucie (Mets) with two RBIs; Calgary's Emerson Frostad, who hit .375 (9-for-24) with two homers and nine RBIs for double-A Frisco (Rangers); and London's Jamie Romak with a .364 (4-for-11) mark at class-A Lynchburg.


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