04/14/2004 1:34 AM ET
Ford takes Bonds drive in stride
By Rick Eymer / Special to MLB.com
In giving up No. 661, Milwaukee reliever Ben Ford became the 391st pitcher to allow a Barry Bonds homer. (Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO -- Ben Ford can commiserate with fellow Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Matt Kinney. One day after Kinney gave up Barry Bonds' 660th career home run to tie Willie Mays for third place on the all-time list, Ford coughed up No. 661.
"It wasn't that good of a pitch. I was trying to keep it down, and bounce it in the dirt but it didn't get down," said Ford, who was making just his second career appearance against the Giants. "I left it out over the plate for him. It was a mistake and he capitalizes on mistakes. He doesn't miss too often. He's one of the best hitters ever and part of the reason is because he makes pitchers pay for mistakes."
Ford has bounced around in the minors in several organizations after originally being drafted by the New York Yankees in 1994. He was taken in the 1997 expansion draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks, with whom he made his Major League debut a year later.
Ford has also been with the Chicago Cubs and Minnesota Twins before signing a minor league deal with the Brewers after the 2003 season.
In his 16th Major League appearance, Ford joined 390 other pitchers who gave up home runs to Barry Bonds.
"I was hoping to stay off that list," said Ford. "I prefer I wasn't on it, but it's not like no one else had it happen to him. That's not the last home run he hits, either. I'm not too concerned."
Ford retired the first five hitters he faced, with only Neifi Perez gettiing the ball out of the infield. Then he got out in front of Bonds, 1-2, before putting himself into the record books.
"Right now I'll still kind of mad about it," said Ford. "It's 661 of them; there's plenty of them. I just have to take it with a grain of salt. He's one of the best of all time."
Milwaukee manager Ned Yost wasn't concerned about the Bonds home run either, since the situation was significantly different than Monday.
"If it's a situation where he can hurt you, you better be very careful the way you pitch to him," said Yost. "You have to make a perfect pitch or a ball every time. Barry Bonds is Barry Bonds, and you have to give him the credit. He really stayed back on that breaking ball."
It's not the way Kinney, Ford or the Brewers wanted to enter the history books, but those names will forever be associated with Bonds' chase of Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron.
Rick Eymer is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.