Three hot chocolates into it, I am sitting in the center field bleachers; peanut shells and spilled beer from my new neighbors cover the grated metal floor.
There could be no more typical San Francisco night: a day in the 70s, followed by a night in the Arctic.
Nearly 40,000 people have bundled up and packed into AT&T Park, set next to the bay. The wind sweeps across the field and chills every person, place or thing. San Francisco normally sells out — despite chilly nights, or even that the Giants are marooned in last place, any extra seats are filled. People have come to hopefully see history, a home run chase everyone knows about, but outside San Francisco, few want to see happen.
We started covering this chase back in spring training, standing on the warning track in Scottsdale, Barry Bonds joked around with teammates, but largely ignored cameras. His new manager told me the controversy was no controversy; the managing partner of the Giants insisted the team would have an appropriate celebration when the time came. Now four months later, the time has come.
Throughout his four at-bats, the Atlanta Braves pitched to Bonds. He was only walked once and hit one ball on the nose. Every swing was captured by thousands of flashes. From centerfield, it looks like fireworks are exploding in the stands. Thousands of white sparkles on every pitch and every swing. On this night, they would capture nothing of importance, because Bonds would hit no home runs; he still sits two away from tying Hank Aaron and three from the record.
Every time Bonds walks to the plate, the stands erupt in ovation, no one is left sitting and a buzz of energy envelopes everyone. This scene is a much different one that's found in every other ballpark when Bonds comes to the plate. I can only imagine that the Giants, Major League Baseball and Barry himself would like to see the record broken here. After all, once this homestand is completed this Sunday, the Giants go to their arch rivals in Los Angeles, then onto San Diego, where just last year a fan threw a syringe at Barry as he walked into the dugout. Yes, it's here in San Francisco, with the cold winds and warm welcomes that for baseball's sake, Bonds needs to break the record.
As the eight inning comes and Barry Bonds singles in his last at bat, I begin to make my way away from the park. Thousands of others have joined me. The Giants are far from the playoffs and most have stayed throughout this cold night to see every Bonds swing.
The standing room's only crowd, above the right field wall, has also dispersed. Outside the park in McCovey Cove, the kayaks are starting to scram and on this night the Giants lose. For fans here, Monday wasn't what it was supposed to be.
Adam Housley joined FOX News Channel in 2001 as a Los Angeles-based correspondent. Most recently, Housley reported from President Ford's funeral. He also reported from Nicaragua and El Salvador on the war against drugs and scored an exclusive interview with Sandinista leader, Daniel Ortega. You can read his full bio here.
Adam Housley joined Fox News Channel (FNC) in 2001 and currently serves as a Los Angeles-based senior correspondent.