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Barry Bonds Asterisk Ball On August 7, 2007 at 8:51 PM PDT, Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants hit a 435-foot home run, the 756th of his MLB career. The pitch was delivered by Mike Bacsik of the Washington Nationals. The homer broke MLB's prestigious all-time career home run record, formerly held by Hank Aaron who had retired after the 1976 season. The pitch, the seventh of the at-bat, was hit into the right-center field bleachers. The fan who ended up with the ball was 22-year-old Matt Murphy from Queens, NY. Bonds, long suspected of steroid use, was hugely unpopular outside of San Francisco, and most fans perceived his home run record to be tainted. Murphy decided to sell the ball to the highest bidder and consigned it to an auction house on August 21. Bidding began on August 28 and closed with a winning bid of $752,467 on September 15 after a three-phase online auction. The highest bidder was fashion designer Marc Ecko who created a website and online poll to let baseball fans decide the fate of the ball. The overwhelming majority of the 10 million online voters preferred the ball be branded with an asterisk (to signify a debatable achievement) and donated to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. Ecko agreed; that's where the ball can be found today. Upon hearing what Ecko intended to do with the ball, Bonds was incredulous. He said, "[Ecko] spent $750,000 on the ball and that's what he's doing with it? What he's doing is stupid." Similarly, the man who bought Bonds' record-tying 755th home run ball for more than $180,000 held a similar online poll to decide that ball's fate. By a 2:1 ratio, fans voted to smash the ball.
Tags: baseball  Barry  bonds  home  run  steroids 
Added: 21st May 2012
Views: 1856
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Posted By: Lava1964
Posted by: Lava1964 on 2012-05-21 
Bob Costas accurately characterized Bonds' march to the MLB career home run record as 'joyless.' I watched the game on TV where Aaron broke Babe Ruth's record in 1974, and I tried to watch Bonds break the record 33 years later. I fell asleep and missed it. I don't feel like I really missed anything.

I had a chance encounter with Bonds in a busy hotel coffee shop in Phoenix during the 2006 season. Bonds was having breakfast. Everyone knew who he was, but not one person approached him for an autograph, which spoke volumes. Had Aaron been in the coffee shop, I suspect he would have been mobbed.
Posted by: Steve on 2012-05-21 
Great post and info as usual Lava! I like the coffee shop comment too!
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