September 19, 2004

September 19, 2004

Shortly after hitting home run number 700, Barry Bonds gives credit to the Negro League players who paved the way.

Bonds, who needs 55 home runs to tie Aaron, is uncomfortable about writers comparing him to Ruth and Aaron. "I'm amazed by all of this right now," he said recently.

But Bonds said that no matter what he does before he retires he will never consider himself the best.

"Hank will be the greatest home-run hitter, that's for sure," Bonds said.

"Hank is always going to be our mentor, just like Jackie Robinson and the black athletes before us who went through the Negro League and couldn't participate in the major leagues at that time. They're the steppingstone to why the rest of us are here now. They'll always be our leaders, regardless of what we do. They're the ones who opened the doors for us. To me, they'll always be No. 1."