Relieved Bonds gets hurt in Giants contest

SAN FRANCISCO -- Barry Bonds expressed "relief" that the
federal grand jury considering possible perjury and tax-evasion
charges against him expired without an indictment.

The slugger's troublesome right knee feels 100 percent, too. But
now the other one is sore.

Bonds left Friday night's game with a bruised left knee
following a leadoff single in the third inning, giving way to
pinch-runner and defensive replacement Todd Linden. Padres starter
Jake Peavy plunked Bonds in the first inning but he initially tried
to stay in the game before having a tough time running to first on
the base hit.

Bonds, who hit his 722nd career home run Thursday night in a win
against the San Diego Padres, declined to talk to reporters
Thursday only hours after federal prosecutors decided not to indict
him for now, but he made a journal entry on his personal Web site.

"First off, I would like to say that what happened today is not
a moment of joy for me, but one of temporary relief," Bonds said
in his latest posting on www.barrybonds.com. "This has been an
issue that has surrounded me for the past three years and I hope
that this is the end. ...

"An investigation happened and hopefully it is over. I do want
to make it clear that there are no hard feelings for the legal
process, but I feel there comes a point where everyone needs to
move on."

Asked later if he wanted to add anything to what he said on his
site, Bonds told The Associated Press, "it speaks for itself."

He turns 42 on Monday and his right knee is feeling better than
it has for a long time, he said. The Giants star underwent three
operations on the knee last year, causing him to miss all but 14
games in 2005.

"I feel great," he said before the Giants played the San Diego
Padres on Friday. "My knee feels 100 percent. I'm not lifting
heavy like I used to. My body is just sore because I'm older."

Bonds is running well again and has turned some of the extra
weight he was carrying around his middle into muscle, though he
noted his weight hasn't changed much. He is listed at 228 pounds.

"I haven't lost much weight, but I've lost my belly," he said.
"I'm down from six or seven meals a day to three and supplementing
with protein shakes."

Stress has affected his appetite, too, he said.

The investigation into Bonds is still ongoing, but it now
appears less likely that an indictment would have an impact on him
and the Giants this season, which could be his last in San
Francisco after 14 years with the club.

In 2003, Bonds testified before the original BALCO grand jury
that he thought substances given to him by his personal trainer,
Greg Anderson, were arthritis balm and flaxseed oil. Authorities
suspect Bonds was lying and that those items were "the clear" and
"the cream" -- two performance-enhancing drugs tied to the Bay
Area Laboratory Co-Operative, the lab exposed as a steroids
supplier to top athletes in baseball, track and other sports.

"There are so many people I would like to thank for their
support. First and foremost, my family and friends," Bonds wrote
on his Web site. "Your support has been constant and unwavering. I
would also like to thank my teammates, the fans and all those who
have stood behind me throughout all of this. Your support has made
a difference for me and allowed me to stay focused on the field."

Bonds is in the final season of a $90 million, five-year
contract with the Giants and knows he might be headed to the
American League as a designated hitter next year.

The seven-time NL MVP passed Babe Ruth for second place on
baseball's career list May 28 and is within 33 home runs of tying
Hank Aaron's all-time record of 755 after hitting his 14th homer of
the season Thursday -- his second home run since the All-Star break.