If possible, he's even better and worse than ever. He continues to astonish, with his bat and his mouth. At 41, Barry Bonds is again proving to be the greatest hitter and biggest jerk in baseball history.
Really? Bigger than Ty Cobb, an avowed racist who once jumped into the stands to attack a fan for suggesting that Cobb might not totally hate black people? Bigger than Bob Gibson, who blatantly talked about throwing at batters' heads?
No athlete I've been around has mixed my emotions the way this guy has. Mixed 'em like a Molotov cocktail.
Pure poetry, Skippy. Those Pulitzer queers call you yet?
More than ever, I'd rather watch a Bonds at-bat than any other moment in sports. Yet his recent words and deeds have finally made it impossible for even me -- a Barry fan -- to separate the hitter from the jerk.
Okay, wait. So your argument is that Barry Bonds is bad for baseball, but also the most exciting thing about baseball? Do I have that right? That's like being a NASCAR fan and complaining that the cars go too fast.
But now that he has let down his team and let down parents everywhere, I finally find myself rooting against this big, uh, jerk.
If you're going to measure how much of a jerk a baseball player is by how well he gets along with Jeff "I've been in altercations with players on every team I've ever been on" Kent, then there are going to be a lot of jerks in the league, dude.
I'm not sure which offends me more: that Bonds damaged (if not wrecked) his team's chance to win the mild, mild West by delaying his return, or that, upon his first visit to Washington to play the Nationals, he scoffed that Congress has been wasting its time with the steroids issue.
Two points here. 1) Barry Bonds did not delay his return. He is 41 years old, coming off three knee surgeries and a serious infection. Do you honestly think he would sabotage what might be his last chance to get to the World Series so he could prove how important he is? 2) Barry Bonds made that comment about Congress at a time when our government, through negligence and mismanagement, totally blew the Katrina situation. His argument was "I think Congress has better things to do right now," which I agree with.
But yes, his comeback has been even better than James Bond in "You Only Live Twice." After missing the first 143 games with what he said was a bad knee, Bonds waltzed back into the lineup on Sept. 13, and in his first at-bat, battled San Diego's Adam Eaton for 11 pitches before hitting a tailing laser to left center that came within a foot of leaving SBC Park.
So, wait. You're back on board? And also, "what he said was a bad knee?" The guy had THREE SURGERIES AND AN INFECTION. Skip, why don't you attack Brian Roberts for sitting out with "what he says is a gruesomely dislocated elbow?"
And that's what makes me -- and others inside the organization and close to the Giants -- suspicious.
You assume Bonds had off-season arthroscopic surgery on his knee ... but with this guy, you never know. In the past, he told reporters with a chuckle that he sometimes misleads them just to get even for all the "negative stuff" they write about him.
You're right. Let's ignore what those surgeons and doctors were saying about Bonds' knee. And who are these "others?" Are they Woody Paige and Bill Plaschke? Scoop Jackson? That girl from Cold Pizza?
Remember the kill-the-messenger soliloquy he delivered to the media in spring training? The one in which he used his crutches and his son as sympathy-seeking props and blamed the media for reporting his leaked BALCO grand jury testimony and the claims of his former mistress, who also testified to the grand jury?
You know why Bonds hates the media? BECAUSE OF ARTICLES LIKE THIS. Articles that attack him for sitting out with a knee injury. Articles that publish what is supposed to be sealed grand jury testimony for the purposes of smearing Bonds. Articles that single Bonds out for having, of all things, a mistress. Bayless, I've got a newsflash for you. I've met more than my fair share of major leaguers, probably way fewer than you have, and guess what? THEY ALL HAVE MISTRESSES. Many of them have several. If women lined up outside Cold Pizza with the hopes of screwing a weird-faced bitter old man, you'd have one too.
It's possible that Bonds' knee had very little to do with his absence for most of the season. It's quite possible he simply decided to take his home-run balls and go home.
You're right. He probably got those surgeries and that infection for fun. And he probably risked his chances of passing Babe Ruth so he could pout. Makes sense to me.
And yes, it's also possible that a relatively minor cartilage cleanup procedure -- usually a month-long recovery, at most -- turned into a six-month rehab.
He is 41 years old. He had three surgeries and an infection.
Yes, the Giants had won eight of nine before he rejoined them in Los Angeles. But in the seven games he was with the team before he actually played, San Francisco went 2-5.
Do you honestly believe Barry's mere presence in the clubhouse bums his teammates out so hard that they're too sad to go out there and play, even though they have a shot at the playoffs? Why do sportswriters think of athletes like they're 5 year old girls?
And you're still sitting out day games after night games when you're only in uniform for the final two and a half weeks of the season?
He is 41 years old. He had three surgeries and an infection.
It also was no coincidence that Bonds waited to make his mind-blowing remarks about the steroid issue until his first visit to Washington. He wanted to rub Congress' nose in it right under Congress' nose.
Remember, the biggest reason Bonds avoided having to testify before the congressional steroid hearings in March was that he was still involved in the ongoing BALCO investigation.
1) Barry made his remarks (which were not at all mind-blowing) because he was asked a question and it happened to be in Washington. So yes, it kind of was a coincidence. 2) Jason Giambi and Gary Sheffield also did not have to testify, because they were part of the same investigation. Why aren't you criticizing them? Oh, that's right. They didn't have three knee surgeries and an infection.
Tuesday at RFK, Bonds set another major-league record for audacity.
Asked whether Congress has wasted its time trying to clean up the steroid problem in sports, Bonds said: "Pretty much, I think so. Yeah."
Though he acknowledged the problem, Bonds said: "There are still other issues that are more important. Right now, people are losing lives and don't have homes. I think that's a little more serious. A lot more serious ...
"We're the United States. We have a crisis here that everybody needs to start contributing to. Not pointing fingers. Contributing to."
How audacious! He actually said what every single American is probably thinking: that Congress should probably be working on helping tens of thousands of disenfranchised citizens who are in serious trouble (a lot of it due to the government's own lapses in leadership), and not, at least for the moment, worrying about a bunch of millionaires who may or may not be taking drugs to make their muscles bigger.
The nerve of this guy using the Gulf Coast disaster to trivialize the seriousness of the steroid epidemic facing this country. Obviously, the Katrina tragedy is far more pressing, but does that mean we should forget about all the teenagers abusing steroids?
What? WHAT? Read that first sentence again. "Using the Gulf Coast disaster to trivialize the seriousness of the steroid epidemic facing this country?" Are you fucking serious? HURRICANE KATRINA BY DEFINITION TRIVIALIZES THE STEROID ISSUE. It was one of the worst natural disasters in the history of the country. Hundreds are dead. Thousands are homeless. And our government was asleep at the wheel. To say that we should be treating the hurricane and steroids with equal seriousness TRIVIALIZES THE HURRICANE. Do you see anyone donating money to set up a fund to stop overprivileged high-schoolers from purchasing steroids?
Apparently, Bonds didn't watch the March testimony of the parents who lost children because of steroid abuse.
No real tragedy there. Right, Barry?
It is sad that those kids died. But the link between their deaths and their abuse of steroids is tenuous at best. And it certainly pales in comparison to A FUCKING HURRICANE.
Sorry this post was so long, but Skippy's article was just so wonderfully filled with aggressive stupidity. I should say that I believe that Barry Bonds did knowingly take steroids, and I do believe that he's probably not the best teammate in the world. But to act like either of these things is unprecedented, and to be so angry about it, is just a waste of time. But then again, so is writing a 1600 word critique of someone for doing just that.
I need a hobby. I'm thinking model trains.
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