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September 29, 2001

Barry Bonds


Q. Yesterday after your home run you, were very emotional and today you had a smile on your face, would you explain the difference between the two?
BARRY BONDS: Well, yesterday, I did something for a friend, and I let it go after that. Like I said, yesterday I was okay with it after that. Today, you know, go back to work and trying to win.

Q. What did you think when you first saw McElroy come into the game?
BARRY BONDS: That my day was over to be honest with you. (Laughter).

Q. Why did you think that?
BARRY BONDS: Because he's always given me problems. He's always pitched me well. Even when he makes a mistake, I still haven't had an opportunity to take advantage of it. Right now, everything is working right.

Q. Can you describe the pitches you saw?
BARRY BONDS: Three or four fastballs.

Q. You've tied Reggie Jackson on the all-time home run record. Can you explain your relationship with him?
BARRY BONDS: He's my cousin, on my mom's side.

Q. How do you feel about moving alongside him on the home run list?
BARRY BONDS: Good. Really good. (Laughs).

Q. What were your impressions of Reggie Jackson growing up, and now that you've matched him, what are your feelings?
BARRY BONDS: It feels good. I have a lot of family members that played professional baseball, and Reggie is another one. It just feels good to finally get all those conversations off my back a little bit. I know he's happy for me, and I'm pretty sure he'll give me a call. It's good to be in that class.

Q. Is it good to have family bragging rights?
BARRY BONDS: I don't have them yet.

Q. Is it getting easier now that you are getting closer to the record? Do you feel more pressure to get that last one?
BARRY BONDS: No, I don't feel pressure with the home runs. I feel pressure with the race. Arizona, unfortunately, is not cooperating. Even though they had a short downspell, we never had the opportunity to take advantage of it. When they lost, we lost. And it looks like they are getting hot again, and it could be too late, but we still have to keep trying to win games and hopefully they will hit a lull again.

Q. Do you have any extra pressure to hit the record-tying home run tomorrow before you go to Houston?
BARRY BONDS: No, I don't have any pressure on it. I thought, you know -- you always want to do things at home. You know, our fans deserve that, and you get to enjoy it a little bit more at home.

Q. Has the exhilaration level gone up with each home run that you've hit, and as you hit one, do you feel better?
BARRY BONDS: I feel good when we win, and that's the good thing about the home runs is it's a pennant race, and every hit or every run scored means something for the team. So when I hit a home run, it feels good because it's helping us stay in contention in this race, and that's what the most important thing is.

Q. The some point this season you must have imagined what it would be like to be on the verge of breaking the record, and now that you are here, what does it feel like and how is it different from what you have imagined?
BARRY BONDS: It feel goods because everyone is in one room. (Laughter.) I can handle this a lot better than one-on-one situations or interruptions before I prepare for a game.

Q. Guys who get in a rhythm say there's a certain way the ball looks. What does the ball look like to you now?
BARRY BONDS: The same. The ball never changes. It's just that you have good times and bad times. You're going to go through slumps and you are not going to go through slumps, but I've never seen a baseball change. I've seen my swing change. I've seen -- I've changed in at-bats, but I have never seen a ball change.

Q. Does the ball ever look bigger, slower, juicier?
BARRY BONDS: No. It looks the same.

Q. Have you and Chuck McElroy joked about the success he's had with you?
BARRY BONDS: Yeah, we've joked a lot about it. Unfortunately, he's always had the better side of the jokes, and he still does. Because even though I did hit a home run, he's still had the advantage over me throughout our careers.

Q. Dusty yesterday was saying that he was surprised you were able to keep your focus all year long; does the fact that the team is in a pennant race, does that help you keep your focus?
BARRY BONDS: Definitely. Definitely.

Q. Do your family and friends not talk about this, and does that help you when you get away from the field or does it help to talk about it?
BARRY BONDS: My friends aren't really baseball people. We hardly ever talk about talk about baseball at any point in time. Most of my friends don't even know what baseball is really about.
My family has been pretty good about it. They haven't really talked about it that much. I got a phone call from my dad, you know, when we were on the road, just congratulating me, and I think that was the first time -- other than that, we all go about our daily lives and hang out with the kids and have fun and don't worry about it.

Q. What about the kids, do they say anything?
BARRY BONDS: My son is watching, my daughter is watching, and my little two-year-old, I think she's into it more than anybody. (Laughter.)

Q. How does she show it?
BARRY BONDS: She just jumps up and down all the time. She's probably the only two-year-old that will sit through all nine innings.

Q. You've faced Tollberg three times, three at-bats before, what do you know about him and what does it matter?
BARRY BONDS: When you face a pitcher, regardless if you've faced him a number of times, it's just in the course of a game, depending what's going on, you have to make judgments throughout the game. I'm pretty sure he studies me and I know I've studied him, and every at bat, every pitch is a new adjustment. You never know. You just have to go out there and beat him to the spot, if you get a chance, and not, you have to wake until the next inning.

Q. Dusty Baker has said that as a black player, you've been taking extra precautions -- inaudible-- this year as you approach the record?
BARRY BONDS: Well, I'd rather not comment on that, just for security reasons and for my family.

Q. After that first at bat, you started laughing with the first baseman, has anybody avoided going at you more than this year?
BARRY BONDS: No, that was unusual. (Laughter.)

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