After Matt Williams’ first-inning homer was measured at 432 feet, teammate Barry Bonds took it as a challenge.
Even though he followed Williams’ two-run shot into the left-field bleachers at San Francisco with a 382-foot solo homer of his own, Bonds wanted to do even better.
He came close in the sixth, driving a pitch from New York Met starter Bret Saberhagen into the upper deck in right field. It fell a little short at 408 feet, but it moved Bonds into a tie with Williams for the National League lead in homers with seven.
“Bonds belongs in a higher league,” Met Manager Jeff Torborg said after his team lost to the San Francisco Giants, 10-5, Thursday at Candlestick Park.
All three homers came off Saberhagen, who has given up six homers in five starts.
The Giants scored four runs in the first inning and took a 7-1 lead after six innings to send Saberhagen (2-3) to his third consecutive loss.
Saberhagen gave up seven runs, five earned, as the Mets committed five errors, including one by Saberhagen and two on the same play by shortstop Tony Fernandez. Saberhagen lasted six innings, gave up eight hits, walked one and struck out five.
San Francisco added three runs in the sixth when Williams doubled and Bonds followed with his drive to the upper deck in right. Royce Clayton, who singled and went to third on Saberhagen’s throwing error, made it 7-1 on Jeff Reed’s sacrifice fly.
Florida 6, Atlanta 5--Dave Magadan’s first homer since last July, a two-run shot in the seventh inning, broke a tie and helped the Marlins get the victory at Atlanta.
The Braves, who fell to 11-13, have lost five in a row for the first time since June 14-18, 1991.
It was the Marlins’ third consecutive victory and fifth in six games, and the expansion club’s first series sweep.
Despite the sweep, Marlin Manager Rene Lachemann was in no hurry to hang around.
“The Braves scare the heck out of me. I’m very happy to get the heck out of Atlanta,” he said.
Chuck Carr got a one-out single, his third of the night, in the seventh and stole his third base and 10th of the season before Magadan hit his first homer of the season over the right-field wall off Pete Smith (2-2).
Magadan’s last home run came on July 28 when he was with the New York Mets.
Luis Aquino (2-1) went the first six innings for Florida, giving up eight hits, walking two and striking out three. Trevor Hoffman got the last three outs for his first major league save.
Smith gave up nine hits, walked two and struck out five in 6 2/3 innings.
Philadelphia 5, San Diego 3--Milt Thompson hit a two-run single and Juan Bell followed with a two-run double in the third inning to help give the Phillies a two-game series sweep at San Diego.
Those were the only hits in the inning, coming after shortstop Craig Shipley booted Wes Chamberlain’s grounder to second base with two outs and runners on first and second.
The first-place Phillies are 16-5, extending their club record for the most victories in April.
Mitch Williams worked the ninth inning for his ninth save.
Danny Jackson (2-0) gave up three runs on seven hits, struck out four and walked two in 7 1/3 innings. Frank Seminara fell to 1-2.
St. Louis 5, Colorado 2--Bob Tewksbury recorded his first victory of the season, helping his cause with a two-run single as the Cardinals won at Denver.
Tewksbury (1-3) gave up both runs and eight hits in 6 2/3 innings, struck out two and walked none. He won 16 games last year and had the second-best earned-run average in the majors at 2.16 but struggled in his first three starts this season.
Tewksbury, a career .124 hitter, singled his first two times up against Andy Ashby (0-2). The runs batted in give him 10 in 186 at-bats.
Ashby gave up four runs and 12 hits in five innings, struck out four and walked two.
Lee Smith finished for his major league-leading 10th save in 11 chances.
Houston 5, Chicago 4--Craig Biggio’s home run broke a sixth-inning tie at Houston as the Astros won their third in a row. Chris James and Jeff Bagwell also hit home runs for the Astros.
Pete Harnisch (2-0) pitched six innings and gave up four runs and six hits for the win. He also scored a run.
With the score 4-4 in the sixth, Biggio homered off Greg Hibbard (1-2) over the left-field wall. Hibbard gave up five runs and 10 hits in six innings.