posted on Jul, 10 2004 @ 12:29 PM
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Barry Bonds and Major League Baseball officials strongly denied a report that the league was compensating Bonds for his
appearance in Monday's home run derby.
"It was flat-out wrong and a flat-out lie, period,"
said Bonds, who beckoned reporters to him in the dugout during batting practice.
Bonds said he delayed entering the contest because he wanted assurance from MLB Senior Vice President Howard Smith that all four active members of the
500-homer club would take part in the contest.
"In the past, people have backed out,"
Bonds said. "I wanted to hear from the horse's mouth that it would go through and everyone would
In a news release, Smith echoed that Bonds will receive no extra favors for participating in the exhibition.
"Having worked with and known Barry for many years and understanding his reluctance to participate, we are extremely grateful Barry recognizes the
historic significance of this year's event, and what his participation means to baseball fans,"
Smith said. "It is extremely disappointing to
Major League Baseball and the San Francisco Giants that his intentions have been grossly misrepresented."
Bonds said he was looking forward to the competition, which also includes Sammy Sosa, Ken Griffey Jr. and Rafael Palmeiro.
"Yeah because it's historical,"
Bonds said. "What are the chances that will happen again?"