Bonds leaves game with heavy heart


PHOENIX (AP) -- Barry Bonds looked up and pointed toward the sky,
just as he does after every home run.

But this was no ordinary homer. His heart told him so.

Overwhelmed by emotion after connecting in his first game back
following his father's death, Bonds later left the San Francisco
Giants' 2-1 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday with
an accelerated heart rate.

"It's tough. I lost my coach," Bonds said.

His father, Bobby, died Aug. 23 at age 57 after being ill for
nearly a year with lung cancer and a brain tumor.

"The emotions just went through me, I felt lightheaded and
couldn't stop my heart rate from racing," Bonds said. "After the
home run I couldn't breathe. I tried to stay in there as long as I
could. That's never happened to me."

Resting on one knee in the on-deck circle when the top of the
eighth ended, Bonds came out of the game in the bottom half. He
left the Giants' dugout shortly thereafter because of heart
palpitations he said started with his homer off Randy Johnson.

San Francisco trainer Stan Conte said Bonds' heart rate was
between 150-160 beats per minute after the home run -- a normal
adult heart rate ranges from 60-100 beats per minute.

Bonds felt better after the game, and Conte said the team would
monitor his heart rate through the night. Bonds was expected to
play Sunday.

"This guy has been through a lot of stress," manager Felipe
Alou said. "Then to show up and play right away is not an easy
thing to do."

Bonds homered in his second at-bat, leading rookie right-hander
Jerome Williams and the Giants to an emotional victory.

Bonds, who missed six games after his father's death, reached on
an infield single in the first, then hit a 403-foot homer into the
right-field stands leading off the fourth.

"If you believe in life after death, a lot of people were
looking at that moment," Alou said.

After crossing home plate, the normally placid slugger pointed
skyward with his index fingers and clapped once. He looked up
toward the closed roof at Bank One Ballpark for a few moments, his
gaze lingering longer than usual.

"My dad's helped a lot of people's careers, especially mine,"
Bonds said. "I just felt like somebody's carrying me right now,
giving me an extra push."

Minutes later, as he left the Giants' first-base dugout to jog
to left field, Bonds briefly pulled his cap low on his forehead and
appeared to wipe his eyes.

"When he came in you could see the emotion on his face,"
Williams said.

Bonds' home run was his major league-leading 40th of the season
and the 653rd of his career. He moved within seven homers of his
godfather, Willie Mays, for third place on the all-time list.

Bonds has seven 40-homer seasons, one short of Hank Aaron's NL
mark and four behind Babe Ruth's major league mark.

Rich Aurilia also homered off Johnson (4-7) for the Giants, who
moved 11{ games ahead of the Diamondbacks in the NL West.

Williams (6-3) took a four-hit shutout into the ninth. He gave
up a leadoff double to Raul Mondesi and a one-out single to Junior
Spivey before Tim Worrell relieved.

Danny Bautista hit an RBI groundout before Worrell struck out
pinch-hitter Carlos Baerga with a runner on for his 30th save in 36

It was Williams' first win since July 12, a 5-1 victory at
Arizona. He walked three, all in the first three innings, and
struck out eight.

Williams was in trouble only once before the ninth, loading the
bases in the third with one out before striking out Shea
Hillenbrand and Spivey to end the threat.

"In the beginning I was throwing well," Williams said. "I got
into that jam, so I had to bear down and get the ball over the

Johnson pitched well in defeat, striking out 11 in seven
innings. He allowed two runs on five hits and two walks -- one

"If there's anything encouraging to take from this ballgame,
it's hopefully RJ is back and throwing the ball the way we hoped he
would," Arizona manager Bob Brenly said. "But if you don't score,
you don't win."

Game notes
San Francisco was 3-3 without Bonds in the lineup. ...
Aurilia's 15 homers at Bank One Ballpark are the most by an
opposing player. ... To make room for Bonds, the Giants placed RHP
Dustin Hermanson on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to Aug. 24
with a strained back muscle. ... Mondesi had three of Arizona's six
hits. ... Bonds received his major league-leading 51st intentional
walk from Johnson in the sixth. ... Arizona RHP Oscar Villareal
made his major league-leading 74th appearance in the eighth inning.
... Bonds has homered in 24 of his last 27 games dating to June 7.
... Johnson struck out Williams leading off the third for his
1,500th strikeout with the Diamondbacks. ... Johnson has 189 career
double-digit strikeout games, second only to Nolan Ryan's 215.