September 2 Philadelphia Daily News
That night, Howard hit a three-run homer off of Dodgers righthander Ronald Belisario, his first extra-base hit since returning from the disabled list on Aug. 21.
“We had a good conversation,” said Howard, who worked out with Bonds in Tampa, Fla., this offseason. “Some of it was about baseball, some of it was everyday, shoot-the-breeze type stuff, everyday conversation . . . Just went back and reiterated what we were talking about before, earlier in the year, and then tried to go put it in play.”
The lunch – Howard described his entree as a veal/chicken-parmesan-style dish – appears to have paid dividends. Howard, who went 4-for-36 with 16 strikeouts in his first nine games back from a sprained ankle, hit a double to deep right-center yesterday in the Phillies‘ 5-1 win over the Dodgers.
He said he has kept in touch with Bonds, the all-time home run leader with 762, periodically during the season.
Bonds, who has been dogged by steroid allegations, was unable to land a job after the 2007 season, despite posting a 1.045 OPS and 28 home runs in 477 plate appearances that year.
“I give him a call from time to time,” Howard said. “He’s happy. He looks like he could still play if he wanted to.””
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