SAN FRANCISCO — Legally cleared at last, Barry Bonds is unconcerned with everybody else’s thoughts on his career or credentials: He’s a Hall of Famer. Hands down.

“I don’t even justify that. There’s no need,” he said Thursday night at AT&T Park. “That’s without saying.”

The 51-year-old home run king said he feels a huge sense of relief since federal prosecutors dropped what was left of their criminal case against him last month after a nearly decade-long steroids prosecution.

“I can say yes, there’s a lot. Because it’d be not true if I said there wasn’t some weight lifted off my shoulders,” Bonds said in an interview with The Associated Press, his first since the government announcement.

“I’ve never been much of a talker. That’s never been my game. I don’t have time to put people down, I don’t have time to do all that stuff. I don’t care to. If people want to say negative things, that’s their opinion,” the former San Francisco Giants star said.

The government’s pursuit of Bonds ended July 21 with a one-paragraph motion by the U.S. Department of Justice announcing Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr. would not ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review the appellate decision that overturned Bonds’ obstruction of justice conviction.

“That’s why I say God is good. Every player who’s ever played against me knows my ability, and that’s something I will never, ever have to explain,” Bonds said. “I’m not insulted by anything. I don’t hold grudges. I’m not going to hold a grudge. I know what I brought to the game. I’m proud of that. That’s all, I’m proud of that.”

Bonds, the seven-time NL MVP, broke Hank Aaron’s career home record of 755 on Aug. 7, 2007, in the last of the slugger’s 22 big league seasons. Bonds hit 762 homers in all.