(Excerpt from AP Story that ran recently):
City Hall will be lit up with orange lights and keeping track of Barry Bonds' home runs starting Friday as the Giants slugger gets closer to breaking Hank Aaron's career record.Thanks for the insight, Gavin ... seriously. How bold and courageous to step up and officially go "on the record" with your support on the cusp of the record (as opposed to in the midst of the Balco investigation).
Mayor Gavin Newsom said a flag hanging from the balcony outside his office would carry the number 753 -- where Bonds' tally stood after he hit two home runs in Chicago on Thursday -- and would be updated with each additional homer until Aaron's mark is surpassed with No. 756.
"Barry Bonds is one of the greatest baseball players of all-time," Newsom said.
There were a couple of other really weird staged PR events at AT&T Park recently too (I promise, btw, that I will never write about Barry Bonds on this blog again ...). In the first home game after the road trip (when Bonds hit two @ Chicago), the PA announcer asked Bonds to address the scoreboard -- where an earlier recording of Joe Montana wishing Bonds luck was played. It happened again after Bonds' next HR, when this time it was Michael Jordan wishing Bonds luck and congratulating him on his success. I mean - they are truly pulling all the stops trying to find a way to sprinkle some silver lining on this.
From Bud Selig's flip-flopping on whether he will / will not be present when Bonds breaks the record ... to the ongoing investigation ... to Bonds' mistresses pending tell-all / pictoral in Playboy ... to these sort of disingenuous, staged PR events at the games ... this has got to be one of the most truly awkward PR sagas in sports history. For the Giants' PR folks, it's got to be like a bad dream that just keeps getting worse.
Image from shapeshift photostream on flickr creative commons.