Democratic vice-presidential nominee Geraldine A. Ferraro today suggested that the recent string of derogatory comments about her from Vice President Bush, his wife and his press secretary is "a bit of a statement on my candidacy: Who am I to challenge this man?"

Appearing on "Meet the Press" (NBC, WRC), Ferraro also agreed that the comments were a "put-down."

"My reaction is that perhaps they're beginning to get a little worried when they see the polls moving" toward a tighter race between President Reagan and Walter F. Mondale, she added.

Bush was overheard Friday telling an official of the International Longshoremen's Association that he tried to "kick a little ass" in the debate with Ferraro. Bush defended the comment as a Texas athletic expression.

Ferraro's campaign manager, John Sasso, has demanded an apology from Bush.

Attending the World Series game with the vice president, Bush spokesman Peter Teeley responded that Sasso "just wants to get his name in the paper. Nobody's taking that seriously. Sasso probably never played sports."

During the program, Ferraro also said she remains opposed to the American invasion of Grenada last year and acknowledged that her position differs from that of running mate Mondale.