May 2006

715: Congratulations!

Barry

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way and have celebrated this historic achievement, we can now move on to the business at hand. The business at hand is a country that still wrestles with old demons that haunt and destroy the progress that we have made here in the land of the free, as a country and as a people. For every man that truly took issue with Barry Bonds surpassing the Babe because he thought Barry had an unfair advantage, I have no issues with you.

My issue is only with the man who couldn’t live with a Black hero overtaking his White hero and him using the steroid accusations to cover his true feelings. I hope that this is a small group and I pray that even this group learns to look beyond race and gender and look to the man and the accomplishment. We have such a great country and there is still a lot of work to be done in race relations, and learning to respect and celebrate our diversity. However, let’s not use baseball as a negative platform to further divide a country that is in the middle of a mid-life crisis. We need to use the game as a bridge of harmony and tolerance. Baseball itself is already a great successful melting pot on the field. Let the game influence society and teach it how to prosper and win as a diverse team. All other issues not related to the game itself should be worked out in other venues. The game represents domestic tranquility. Fields of dreams. Summer romances. Graduations and proms. Ice cream and soda. Hot dogs and popcorn. Pennant drives and World Champions.

Barry, we salute you. Well done. Hank Aaron will now receive the respect and honor he earned and America was not ready to give at the time.

The Babe should have never been the issue. He’s not the home run champ. We do owe Babe for all he did to make the game what it is today. Home Run King? That honor belongs to Hank. What was all the fuss about?

714: A Wonderful Life, Oakland Proud!!

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I have been pulling for Barry from day one, to complete the mission and fulfill his destiny
as the Home Run King. It’s so poetic that he would hit number 714 in the ball park and city that I grew up in. I know every blade of grass on tBarrysalute
hat field, every spot of tobacco juice in the dugout and every taste of relish, mustard and sauerkraut on the hotdogs. I know when the temperature will drop to a cold winter breeze on a summer night and when the pop ups
change to home runs from the bay winds. This is My house.

The Oakland Coliseum. The stomping grounds and heroics of Mr. October (Reggie Jackson). Barry, thank you for blessing my house. Perhaps a shadow of things to come. I’m so proud of the Oakland A’s fans. They showed class and respect as they honored Barry with a standing ovation and a curtain call. The Bay Area. We do our on thing and have our own thoughts. The historic moment was received in the manner that all of baseball should receive it. Number 714 hit in Oakland!

What a Wonderful Life indeed.

One bottle down, one to go.

My Dad and My Boys

5/13/06 at the Giants game.

With Google’s David Lee

Giants game day.

Mama and The Boys: Mother’s Day Ball Game

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Jeremiah, Mom (Stephanie) and Sammy are all smiles at the Giants game.

And now it’s on to dinner at MoMo’s.

–Hammertime

5/13/06 at the Giants game

Mama and The Boys

Mother’s Day 2006 at a Giants game.

Happy Mother’s Day: To All Mothers

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Giantsd

First, A Giants game with our friends The Homers, Go Barry!!

–Hammertime

Barry Bonds Fans: 3 Generations

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Well, Barry didn’t do it today, but then again, yes he did. What Barry did was bring excitement and thrills and sold out baseball’s best and sexiest ballpark.

The game was a classic, as the Giants came back in the bottom of the ninth from three runs down to beat the hated rival, "Los Angeles Dodgers."

My father and my boys loved the anticipation of history being made right before our very eyes.

We enjoyed the game with our friends the Conways along with Google‘s David Lee…

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…and his lovely wife pictured here:

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Baseball is truly a family sport. Long live the game!

Willie

–Hammertime

Rule 714: ESPN

Major League Baseball is making a mistake. Not celebrating 714 does more hurt to the game, than help. No one is asking MLB to be judge and jury. If you don’t celebrate the second greatest achievement in baseball history, then number 3 (Babe Ruth) becomes a fading memory. Who cares about number 3?

The swing is the thing! Barry’s beautiful swing combined with his laser eyes and hand speed are extraordinary. There are stronger players in the game, but they lack the skills of Barry. We are not celebrating are supporting the use of drugs. On the contrary, I am celebrating that swing, his skills and knowledge of the game.

Rule 714 (don’t celebrate a scapegoat) is going to bite baseball in the butt! Already the legend of the Babe is taking a beating. Now your (MLB) blatant attempt to protect the legend of a hitter who wasn’t even the best in his time (Negro Leagues, Blacks were excluded from playing) is being called to the carpet by many. I like The Babe. I love and hate the Yankees. Love the tradition, hate when they beat my A’s and love and respect George.

Set aside judgment, and celebrate the greatest feat in sports in the last 50 years. Imagine if baseball had decided to support Barry Bonds. The game would have won new fans and would be the hot topic of today, in a positive light. We can always debate performance enhancing drugs and who did or didn’t take them and what effect it had on the numbers and the game. We then can decide the penalty and how to uniformly apply it.

However, what we are witnessing is once in a lifetime. Let’s enjoy this magnificent achievement and allow the world to celebrate with us. Abandon Rule 714. Lift up the game! It’s not too late. Go to the mound and make a change.

I tip my hat to ESPN. They are walking the tightrope with the best of them. MLB should take notes. While it’s clear they don’t support Barry, they are acknowledging and celebrating the moment in a way that only ESPN could do. Masterful to say the least.

The "Bonds on Bonds" show is fair and balanced. I couldn’t believe that some analyst didn’t want Barry to have a platform to offer another perspective of who he is. That is typical of agenda-driven journalism that will soon be replaced by community-driven journalism that will offer the voice of the people, not these one-sided attacks to create perception, that offer no counter perspective.

The executives at ESPN held to their guns and deserve accolades for their courage. I applaud them and ESPN. Rule 714 has no place in sports reporting.

Now let me add a little more ice around these two bottles (714 and 715, respectively) that I will soon pop.