The Baseball Desert

Friday, August 22, 2003

It ain't over 'til it's over

There's a reason that clichés become clichés - it's that, generally, they're true, as last night's games showed. No less than four games were won with walk-off home runs - the heroes were: Tony Batista (Baltimore), Todd Helton (Colorado), Jim Edmonds (St. Louis) and Barry Bonds (San Francisco)...

Hang on a second - didn't Barry Bonds hit a walk-off home run two days ago as well? Well, yes he did, and, despite the fact that he's not on the Baseball Desert's list of Ten (or Fifty or even Hundred) Favourite Ballplayers, I have to say that he's got me singing Aretha Franklin right now: "R-E-S-P-E-C-T" ... Giants manager Felipe Alou probably summed it up best after last night's game: "Maybe there might be a league on another planet where he's just another guy".

Bonds is having an amazing season by anyone's standards, and the hot topic right now is whether the NL MVP award should go to him or to the Cardinals' Albert Pujols. However, beyond the stats - and even if it's not something that will be taken into account in the award - you have to remember that Bonds is carrying the Giants to the playoffs whilst coping with a horrible personal situation. ESPN's Mark Kreidler has written a good article on the subject, and what he writes rings even more true when you realise that the article pre-dates Bonds' two walk-off homers.