The fate of the baseball that San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds hit earlier this year to break Hank Aaron's all-time home run record has been decided. It will be branded with an asterisk and sent to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.
Fashion designer Marc Ecko, who bought the ball for about $750,000 in an auction, let the public decide. He set up a Web site for fans to vote for one of three choices. The other two selections were sending the ball to Cooperstown unblemished or launching it into space on a rocket.
Ecko said he believed the vote to brand the number 756 on the home run ball showed people thought it "was shrouded in a chapter of baseball history that was not necessarily the clearest it could be."
The asterisk suggests that Bonds' record is tainted by alleged steroid use. The slugger has repeatedly denied knowingly using performance-enhancing drugs.
Hall of Fame officials and Ecko are discussing how to affix the asterisk on the ball. It is not yet known when the ball will go on display.
The 43-year-old Bonds will not be returning to play for the San Francisco Giants next season. The team announced last Friday it would not re-sign the seven-time National League Most Valuble Player.
Bonds wraps up his 15th season with San Francisco on Sunday. Previously he played for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Some information for this report was provided by AP.