Bonds Hits No. 69, One Away From McGwire's Record

Sept 29, 2001

Bonds Hits No. 69, One Away From McGwire's Record

AP Sports Writer

SAN FRANCISCO - Barry Bonds hit his 69th home run Saturday, movingwithin one of the record Mark McGwire set three seasons ago.

It was the second homer in as many games for Bonds, who has five home runsin his last six games. The homer was the 563rd of Bonds' career, tying ReggieJackson for seventh on the career list.

Bonds' homer splashed into McCovey Cove, a part of San Francisco Bay justbehind the right-field wall. Boaters, kayakers and guys on surfboards battledfor the ball in the water.

Bonds homered on a 2-1 pitch off left-hander Chuck McElroy, who was facinghis first batter of the game. He relieved Brett Jodie at the start of the sixthinning. The homer gave the San Francisco Giants a 2-1 lead over the San DiegoPadres.

Bonds stopped after he touched home plate to point skyward - as has becomehis custom in recent weeks. He then took a curtain call as fans chanted hisname.

McGwire hit 70 homers in 1998 to break Roger Maris' 37-year-old record of61, but Bonds is just one from matching McGwire's mark with seven games leftafter Saturday.

The Giants have one more game at home against San Diego on Sunday, thentravel to homer-friendly Enron Field in Houston for three games. They return toSan Francisco to finish the regular season with a three-game series against LosAngeles.

The homer was the 11th in September for Bonds, surpassing his career bestfor homers in the final month of the season.

Bonds has 63 career homers against San Diego, his most against any team.

The drive also gave Bonds 132 RBIs, extending his career best.

Bonds, already the most prolific left-handed home run hitter in NL history,has passed nine players on the overall career list since hitting his 500thhomer on April 18.

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