So, Pat Hruby at ESPN Page 2 wrote a nice piece discounting Bonds' home runs, using a half-assed scientific approach. It's pretty amusing, though I was immediately struck by a glaring omission - if Bonds weren't such a tremendous threat, his walk rate would have suffered, leaving more official at-bats and therefore a few more homeruns (since the calculations are all based on HR-per-AB ratios). I noticed the feedback button, and fired off a quick message pointing this out.
Of course, I failed to notice a little sidebar entitled "FAQ"... had I paid attention, I would have seen my question, as well as its answer (which is, BTW, give Bonds an extra 17 taters). Doh! I so rarely reply or email writers, it figures this rare occasion would be one in which I display such a lack of sense. :-)
So, if we give him [Bonds] the extra 17, he's at 633, or 81 behind his actual total. 755 (Hank) + 1 (to beat Hank) + 81 (cushion to 'clear the asterisk') = 833.
So, if Barry can get to 833, we celebrate? At his 2006 rate of 1 HR per 20.33 PA (after subtracting out intentional walks and HBP), then assuming Barry continues to play 84% of his team's games (as he's done this year), and assuming 3.37 PA per game (as he has done for the past 3 years), he should reach our new target of 833 near the All-Star break, 2011! (stats from The Hardball Times)