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BASEBALL EXTRA | DODGER SCOUTING REPORT / SAN FRANCISCO

Giants' Bonds: 'I Just Stink and We Lost'

June 03, 1997|From Associated Press

MIAMI — Struggling Barry Bonds says he doesn't deserve to be playing on a first-place team . . . or any team.

Bonds vented two months of frustration after making the final out Monday night when San Francisco lost to the Florida Marlins, 4-2.

"I shouldn't be allowed to wear a uniform," Bonds said. "Things are happening that never happened to me before. I'm going through stuff I haven't gone through in baseball, but I'm not going to stay down forever. I will come out of it."

Al Leiter pitched seven innings, his longest outing of the year, and Gary Sheffield homered to lead the Marlins.

Bonds' profanity-laced comments followed an 0-for-3 performance that dropped his average to .256. He left four men on base, including runners at first and second when he grounded to second to end the game.

"We could have won this game. I just stink and we lost," he said. "It just didn't work out. It hasn't worked out since April 1."

The three-time National League most valuable player has eight home runs and 26 RBIs. He's on a pace for season totals of 24 and 78, his worst production since 1989.

"It's frustrating, especially when you're the RBI man all your life," Manager Dusty Baker said.

Even though the Giants' star has struggled, they lead the NL West.

"Barry Bonds is the greatest player in the game," teammate Glenallen Hill said. "I'm sure before it's over he'll work it out if he has a problem. If he needs us, we'll be there to help out and give him encouragement. But we aren't waiting around for Barry Bonds to save us."

Leiter (5-3) gave up four hits, walked four and struck out five.

"I walk a lot of people, I throw a lot of pitches," Leiter said. "I create situations and then make a pitch to get out of them. But that's the way I've pitched. It stinks that you create a situation where the manager pulls his hair out and the fans get into it, but I feel comfortable with that."

Blanked for 8 2/3 innings, the Giants got two-out RBI singles in the ninth from Stan Javier and Jose Vizcaino. Robb Nen then retired Bonds for his 14th save.

Florida and San Francisco went into the game tied for the second-best record in the National League behind Atlanta.

Mark Gardner (6-2) lost for the first time since April 6. He gave up seven hits and four runs in 4 2/3 innings.

Sheffield was 1 for 11 against Gardner before hitting a one-out homer in the fourth inning, his sixth. Bonds and Sheffield rank 1-2 in the NL in walks.

"I'm sure Sheffield feels the same way as Barry," Gardner said. "Not getting any pitches to hit, they're not able to get in a rhythm. And when they finally do see a pitch, it's almost a shock."

(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)

NEXT SERIES FOR DODGERS

WHO: San Francisco Giants

WHERE: Dodger Stadium

WHEN: Wednesday: 7:30 p.m., Thursday: 7 p.m.

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