SAN FRANCISCO - The Babe Ruth Birthplace and Museum expressed disgust Thursday with comments made by Giants slugger Barry Bonds about Ruth during All-Star Game festivities.
"To suggest that those feats are somehow capable of "wiping out' Ruth illustrates a complete disregard for the history and tradition of our national game, and its greatest player and star," Michael L. Gibbons, executive director of the Baltimore museum, said in a statement.
Gibbons was referring to Bonds' quotes regarding Ruth's place in history.
Bonds said Thursday he meant what he said as a compliment, and that he would consider it a huge accomplishment to pass Ruth on the all-time home run list.
"Babe Ruth is symbolic of baseball," Bonds said. "If there is a record you want to go after, it's Babe Ruth. Because Babe Ruth is Mr. Baseball, right? ... He's considered the greatest baseball player, and if you want to compare yourself, you want to compare yourself to the greatest player."
Bonds leads the majors with 30 home runs. That leaves him 17 shy of tying his godfather, Willie Mays, for third on the career list at 660. Ruth hit 714 and Hank Aaron hit 755.
On Monday, Bonds said: "Willie's number is always the one that I've strived for. And if it does happen, the only number I care about is Babe Ruth's. Because as a left-handed hitter, I wiped him out. That's it. And in the baseball world, Babe Ruth's everything, right? I got his slugging percentage and I'll take his home runs and that's it. Don't talk about him no more."