Posted at 2:36 PM on May 6, 2005
by David Zingler
"The day his knee is healthy, he will be back on the field in uniform," agent Jeff Borris on his client, Barry Bonds.
Is that good news?
There was a time when I was a fan of Barry Bonds. During my forgettable high school years in the early 90s, I had a picture of the slender Pirates slugger hanging in my locker. Despite his surly reputation and arrogant attitude, I cheered him on during his 2001 assault on Mark McGwireís single season homerun record. In Atlanta in 2002, I leaned on the cage as he took batting practice, which still ranks as one of my biggest thrills.
Barry, I didnít want to believe you used steroids. The evidence was there as my friends and many in the media often pointed out, but I thought you were too smart for that. With 3 MVPs from your Pirate days and admission into the 400 homerun/400 steal club, your place in the Hall of Fame was secure. Itís too bad you werenít.
Insecurity, a former teammate of yours from the late 90s told me, may have been a driving force behind your chemical enhancement. Another second generation star, Ken Griffey Jr. , was getting all of the hype back then and, in a travesty, was voted to the ďAll Century TeamĒ over you. You couldnít have that, you were better than the then happy-go-lucky Kid Griffey.
Of course, you went onto break Big Macís record with an unnatural sounding 73. You then proceeded to make a mockery of several other single season marks, blow by the 600 homerun plateau, pass your godfather Willie Mays for third on the all time list and finally join Babe Ruth and Henry Aaron in the 700 club.
Barry, thatís enough. The damage has been done. Itís time to put that era behind us. Please donít come back and chase Ruth and Aaron. Donít turn what should be a monumental achievement into a hollow pursuit. That would just hurt the game, the fans and, in the end, you.
i am with you -- barry needs to hang it up. he was once so cool, but is now pathetic. what sucks is all of us that grew up in the 80s and 90s and followed baseball witnessed a sham -- a fraud.
thanks for nothin' barry, big mac, & jose.