« on: April 13, 2004, 02:41 PM »
Does any one actually give a sh!t that Bonds hit his 660th home run yesterday? ESPN actually interupted PTI yesterday to show the at bat in which he hit it.
Some one wake me up when the ass hole passes Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron. Then I might care. Might being the key word.
Not really. I was just out at lunch, and they were talking about this on ESPN Radio. Dan Patrick was going on and on about how this is such a big deal, and asking why isn't Barry Bonds getting the recognition. Nobody has hit this many since Hank Aaron passed Willie Mays in 1972. He was also complaining about the Balco, saying that people should be fair to Bonds until he has been found guilty of something.
For me, it boils down to these points:
First, it's third place. Not as big a deal to begin with right there. If or when he catches Babe Ruth, then I'll take notice.
Second, I think that Willie Mays' overall numbers were more impressive. He played all of his home games at some of the worst hitters parks in the history of baseball. The Polo Grounds, Candlestick Park, and even Shea Stadium were all among the worst hitters parks in baseball, and Willie Mays put up impressive numbers in all of them. He was also a far superior overall player to Barry Bonds. Has Bonds ever made a play in the field that compares with Mays' over the head basket catch?
Third, there's the whole steroids suspicion. Has Barry Bonds been found guilty of using steroids? No. Do most major league baseball fans think he has? Yes. Does the public's opinion of players matter in the grand scheme of things? Yes. Barry Bonds on the Pittsburgh Pirates of the early 90's is a very different looking guy to Barry Bonds of 2004. Anyone with eyes can see that. Add in the leak of Bonds' name in association with the Balco case, and you just have to play connect the dots.
On top of all of these things, Bonds' poor relationship with the media has not helped his case. The writers can be your friend or they can be your enemy. Anyone who has seen the movie 61* will understand just sports writers are very influential people. Bonds is completely responsible for his public image by the way he has conducted himself with the press and the public, and this is going to follow him well after his career. Most people remember just how great a ballplayer Ty Cobb was, but just as many people knew he was possibly a cheater, a dirty player, a racist and an overall rotten human being. I think the same kind of thing will follow Barry Bonds to the end of his days.