SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Barry Bonds showed why Mets manager Willie
Randolph chooses to walk the slugger so often.
Randolph faced constant questions Tuesday about whether it was
still necessary to issue free passes to Bonds, considering his
early season struggles.
Bonds then hit his 710th career home run, though Xavier Nady
upstaged the San Francisco star with a tiebreaking solo homer to
left over Bonds' outstretched glove in the seventh inning of New
York's 4-1 victory over the Giants.
"I just want to say for all you second-guessers, that's why I
walked Barry Bonds last night," Randolph said. "He still has
thunder in his bat. It's not like he can't be pitched to, but you
have to respect how he can impact a game."
Cliff Floyd splashed a Bonds-like two-run homer into McCovey
Cove in the eighth for his second career homer into the water and
the 12th by a San Francisco opponent. The Giants have done it 40
times -- 31 by Bonds.
Floyd had been in a 4-for-24 slump on the Mets' current 10-game
trip and was 0-for-7 in this series before hitting his second home
run of the year.
"It was just awesome to contribute," Floyd said. "It's been a
tough month for me thus far but I'm going to take that positive and
sleep better tonight."
Steve Trachsel (2-1) pitched six strong innings and kept the
Giants in check after allowing Bonds' second homer of the season
and the slugger's first of the year at home, a drive starting the
Bonds sent a 1-1 pitch from Trachsel into the left-field seats
for his first homer in the Giants' waterfront ballpark since last
Sept. 18 against the Dodgers -- one of only two he hit at home last
year in an injury-shortened season.
"It was nice," Bonds said. "It felt good to hit the ball good
The 41-year-old Bonds, nursing a tender surgically repaired
right knee and a swollen left elbow, grimaced noticeably as he
limped around the bases after his homer. He arrived at home plate
to chants of "Barry! Barry!"
He returned to play left field in the top of the third, waving
several times to the cheering fans before tipping his cap in two
Bonds, who has said in recent days his knee is hurting, struck
out on four pitches in the fourth, walked in the seventh and hit a
game-ending flyout in the ninth.
He later complained that the Giants removed heaters from the
dugout, forcing him to sit in the tunnel between innings wearing
heat packs to keep his muscles warm.
"It's just sore. It was cold, real cold," Bonds said. "We're
used to having heaters in the dugout to keep yourself warm and
loose and we don't have them. ... Sit in the tunnel with heat packs
on is about all you can do."
About an hour before the game he received a massage on his knee,
which underwent three operations in 2005 and kept him out all but
14 games. He also briefly stopped his clubhouse card game in the
afternoon to watch his television series.
Bonds, who hit his first homer of the year Saturday at Colorado,
wasn't expected to be in the lineup for Wednesday's day game -- the
finale of the three-game series with New York.
"He had a great BP today," Giants manager Felipe Alou said.
"He's coming along."
Trachsel, who allowed only two other hits, challenged the
seven-time NL MVP and gave up his third career homer to Bonds,
whose last seven homers at home have been solo shots. This one came
a night after Bonds drew the 617th and 618th intentional walks of
his career and went 0-for-1 with three walks in all.
Moises Alou drove in five runs following the intentional free
passes in Monday's 6-2 win, giving the Giants 18 runs scored after
Bonds' intentional walks this season.
"It wasn't like I was trying to challenge him or anything, I
was just trying to pitch to him," Trachsel said of Bonds. "I was
more worried about Moises Alou from past experiences. Moises is a
guy I've had trouble with. They're both dangerous."
Bonds is five homers from passing Babe Ruth for second on the
career list -- which would give him the most homers by a left-hander
-- and 46 away from breaking Hank Aaron's mark of 755.
Wright gave up four runs and 10 hits but didn't walk a batter
and struck out four.
Randy Winn, the Giants' leadoff hitter, extended his skid
to 0-for-17. ... Floyd also homered into McCovey Cove on Aug. 21,
2004, against Brett Tomko. ... Giants C Mike Matheny committed his
first error of the season in the first when he tried to throw out
Jose Reyes stealing second and sailed a ball into center that
allowed Reyes to reach third. The steal was the 100th of Reyes'
career. Matheny only had one error last year. ... Wright's
second-inning pickoff of Matsui was his 45th, best among active
right-handers in the majors and eighth among all pitchers. Mets
lefty Tom Glavine is next with 50.