Boss's Boycott: The Bonds Vanishes

The Commissar Vanishes is a coffee table book for only the dourest of coffee tables. The hard-covered volume is a photographic compilation of the way that Josef Stalin systematically erased his chief political opponents, Leon Trotsky and his followers, from the history of the Russian Revolution.

Page after glossy page plainly displays the desecration of memory at the service of dictatorship. It shows before-and-after photos of people either airbrushed to invisibility or crudely vandalized, their faces blacked out with an ugly scribble.

Meet Barry Bonds, the Leon Trotsky of Major League Baseball. In 2007 Bonds broke the most hallowed record in sports, passing Henry Aaron's record for home runs. When he wasn't injured, this maestro of the batter's box packed San Francisco's ballpark, despite a team that stank like cottage cheese left on a radiator. At season's end, the Giants refused to re-sign him, with owner Peter Magowan saying, "We're going in a new direction; that would not be going in a new direction. The time has come to turn the page." That is surely his right, but the page hasn't just been turned, it's been raggedly erased.

All traces of Bonds, the greatest player in baseball history, have vanished from the Bay. The left-field wall no longer carries an image of Bonds chasing Hank Aaron for the crown. There is no marker of where Bonds hit home run number 756. There is no reminder that Bonds ever even wore a Giants uniform.

But it's not just Magowan trying to “disappear” Barry Bonds. He has been blackballed in a blatant and illegal act of Major League collusion, a bosses' boycott. Yes, Bonds' fielding has become painful to watch in recent years, as the seven time gold glover limped around the outfield on knees grinding together without cartilage. But despite the agony of movement most of us take for granted, Bonds still hit 28 home runs in 340 at bats, led the NL in walks, and had an on base percentage of .480. Since 1950, only Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Norm Cash, and Bonds himself have recorded higher OBP's. [Cash’s epic season was an anomaly in an otherwise middling career. That a player could have a brilliant year out of nowhere, used to be one of the charms of baseball. Today they would be accused of sprinkling steroids on their corn flakes.]

Maybe Bonds can no longer roam the outfield, but there are at least a dozen AL teams that could use a designated hitter with a .480 OBP, not to mention a player whose every game would sell tickets and every at-bat would provoke baited breaths and empty bathrooms.

In this case of blackballing so obvious it would shame a Dartmouth frat house, one would think the media would be raising hell. But they have largely been yipping collusion lackeys. Bill Simmons, ESPN.com's Sports Guy, wrote,

"Opening Day came and went without Bonds for the first time in 22 years, and nobody seemed to notice. I didn't think about him for more than two seconds all spring. Did anyone? Can you remember being a part of a single "I wonder where Bonds is going to end up?" conversation? Did you refresh ESPN.com incessantly in hopes of a Bonds update?...Of course not. No one cared. The best hitter since Ted Williams is gone and forgotten. We wanted him to go away, and he did."

There is one problem. Bonds doesn't want to go gently into that good night and is pushing his union to fight back. He has asked the Players Association to file collusion charges on his behalf and the union has served Commissioner Bud Selig with papers. [There is a certain irony here as Bonds was hardly Big Bill Haywood during his career. In 2003, he became the first player in thirty years to not sign the Player's Association's group licensing agreement.]

The Player's Association's efforts on Bonds behalf have also met with high profile derision. Newsweek's Mark Starr wrote "The union approaches new heights of absurdity when it bothers to investigate whether collusion has ended the career of baseball's all-time home run king, Barry Bonds, who can't attract an offer to play anywhere this 2008 season. What the union sees as possible collusion, once an honored practice among ownership, I see as a rare display of common sense."

Bonds, according to Starr, is "widely regarded as a cancer in the clubhouse."

This is moralistic spew. The idea that baseball owners would ruin their own team's chances because they have collectively agreed to "turn the page" is a violation of Bonds' rights and the unwritten social contract they have with fans. And when one considers the absence of saints on Major League Baseball teams, even on the God Squad in Colorado, it is all the more drenched in hypocrisy.

Mike Gimbel, who is a former adviser on player trades and acquisitions to the GM's of the Boston Red Sox and the Montreal Expos, wrote it well.

"Bonds has been accused of not telling the truth to a grand jury investigating BALCO [the Bay Area Lab Company, implicated in steroid distribution]. He does not own BALCO and does not distribute steroids on behalf of BALCO. Why was the grand jury investigating Bonds? Weren't they supposed to be investigating BALCO? How did that 'investigation' of BALCO turn into a witch hunt directed against MLB players?"

Good questions. Bonds deserves far better than to be forced into retirement and have his history coarsely expunged. The overriding ethos of the sports world is that of the meritocracy. If you are good enough, then you get to play. Yet a man who can get on base 48% of the time, has been told to go home and a new generation of fans will never see the Mozart of the batting cage. This is about more than a baseball player. It's about people in power deciding on utterly unjust grounds, who gets to take the field, who gets to be heard, and even who gets to be remembered. Somewhere, Stalin smiles.

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Norm Cash's 1961 season

Dave -- Norm Cash later admitted he used a corked bat in his great 1961 year. See Wikipedia and many other sources.

Bonds on Bonds

This whole mess is going to come to a big head (no pun) when Barry is eligible for the HOF in five years. What do you expect from a sport that enshrines Bowie Kuhn and ignores Marvin Miller?

Barry Bonds As Leon Trotsky

Mr. Zirin,
My initial thought about the Bonds case was that no team would want to pay the grand theft money that Bonds would demand for a part-tme player. He said that he would like to go to the American League as a "designated hitter."

Another aspect of the case is that, even though he's one of the greatest players in the game, he's a schmuck in the clubhouse, and a pain in the ass personally. If he was 10 years younger, they would put up with him, as they did before.

Even though I at first thought the collusion grievance that the Baseball Players union is filing is b.s., as a union activist, I now believe the grievance is legitimate.

What relief is the grievance seeking? For Bonds to be hired by a team? If they don't want him now, will they want him more after the grievance is settled?

Thank you for your good work. I enjoy reading you very much.

Hank Silver
Berkeley, CA

Norm Cash

Cash corked his bat? Why aren't his records expunged? Why hasn't he been hung from the highest tree? I thought cheating began in the 1990s!

Barry Bonds and Baseball

I don't give baseball 2 minutes of attention, and haven't for years. I read Dave's articles because he speaks the truth and brings consciousness to the relationship between sports and the larger society.

Bond's expurgation from the annals of baseball lore is just another example of how the powerful write their own history. Read Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States for an alternative to what the white establishment wants us to know. And, I am white, so it is not sour grapes on my part.

Thanks, Dave, for shining a light on the darkness of our times.

I am committed to Oneness through Justice and Transformation

peace,
st john

Look harder

It all sounds like a conspiracy of silence, but people actually have talked about Bonds and when he will likely appear in the major leagues. If you take a step back, it's pretty obvious that it made no sense to have him around in spring training--Bonds would have consumed the greater part of some organization's time while they were preparing for the season, and maybe people have forgotten that Bonds is actually awaiting a trial, which could be a major disruption.

I think Bonds will help someone in the second half of the season, when his ability to help a contender will outweigh the seriously large amount of baggage he brings. If Bonds is signed for a 3-4 month period, his commitments to appear before the courts will be better known.

I won't deny that collusion is a possibility, though. Major league sports in North America are run like intramurals and are essentially a party for a select few who can run their affairs with near impunity, and that is a far bigger story, and essentially undiscussed, story than what is happening to Barry Bonds, a man who really does not need to find work.

white wash, 911 Truth, Barry Bonds.

Take it from one who is a radio show host at a low powered college radio station of "the 9/11 Truth Hour". I understand all too well how it feels yelling truth into a tidal wave of name calling, filthy lies and a killing of the messenger. Once in awhile I change topics and read an important article on my show. So Keene, NH will get a dose of truth concerning Barry Bonds, courtesy of one of my favorite writers: Dave Zirin. Anyone interested can hear it live online at wknh.org (Fri 5/16 at 6pm). Forever in pursuit of any and all truths no matter how others perceive us,
Mike Casner

Cheating in Sports

As long as we're on the subject, I've been reading "The Echoing Green," an account of the famous Bobby Thomson homer of 1951. Turns out they cheated, stealing the catcher's signals with a telescope and relaying them to the batter.

Plus ca change....

best column ever, Dave

I really miss checking in the morning (or staying up all night to get it live on the internet -- I'm in Europe) to see how many times Bonds walked, or it he hit another homer, and I'm sure there are millions more fans like me.

But what I don't get is what do the owners have to gain from blacklisting him -- does his absence make the game seem any cleaner? The steroid story is all about greed (on all levels) and human frailty -- but it doesn't diminish the joy of watching baseball

Persecution of Bonds continues

I agree the Bonds is the greatest player ever, whatever he did or did not take (as the great Hank Aaron took greenies). I miss him too. He certainly could be helping an American League team. I think he has been singled out, unlike the many others still playing who are steroid suspect , e.g. Tejada. As a long-time baseball fan, I rarely care to check the box scores anymore since Bonds' banishment.

Bonds Blacklist

Dave, thanks for another great article. I hope Bonds wins the collusion case, because it would be just what MLB deserves for its arrogance, smugness, self-righteousness, disingenuousness, ... and for thinking that we're all stupid.

So much for "free market" competition

Tying MLB to Stalin is great analogy. There is nothing more Communist than professional sports. Not only do the owners decide "who gets to take the field, who gets to be heard, and even who gets to be remembered", they also decide who gets to own a team and where that team can play. On top of that, the value of their franchise is subsidized by tax payers. They can set higher prices while putting out a losing product. So much for real free market competition and baseball is supposed to define America.

Better off without him

Regarding the comments above----

(“There is a certain irony here as Bonds was hardly Big Bill Haywood during his career. In 2003, he became the first player in thirty years to not sign the Player's Association's group licensing agreement.”)

and

"Bonds deserves far better than to be forced into retirement and have his history coarsely expunged."

A bigger question is---Barring any collusion among Selig and the owners and if players could vote guys on and off of a team.....Is there one team whose players would vote to have Bonds join their team? What team has a majority of players who would want Bonds as a "teammate?"

In '03, Bonds made a choice to set himself apart (and way above) every current and former ballplayer. Forget any possible collusion among Selig and the owners ---You can't get on a MLB field without "TEAMMATES." You cannot play the game yourself. If Bonds is being mistreated by anyone, why don't his ex-teammates come to his support?

My guess is that if the players on each team voted on having him or not, he could not find a job.

My ex-"teammates", George B and Frank W have bronze statues outside of Royals Stadium. Although the Royals could use some offense from somewhere, the statues would probably wobble some if Bonds wore a Royals uni…

The statement above ---("There is a certain irony here....) that is hidden in brackets should have been put in bold letters.

How about an article titled, “How to Burn Bridges with your "teammates” on your way to the top?

A last thought--If Bonds were to come back it would be as an AL DH. He wants to be on a Series winner so there is no team in the AL that fits his "biggest desire". Of the handful of AL teams that can go to the WS, he would not fit in.

If that is the case, what is his reason for wanting to continue playing? To help the Royals and the other no-chance teams get into a playoff postion? Gimme a break.

Bonds should retire gracefully while he still has more "face" than Clemens..

Better off without him?

There are a lot of players of whom their teammates might not want them on their team (Jeff Kent comes immediately to mind) . . . why does this matter? Players don't run teams . . . players that want to win would want BLB on their team.

By the way, firejoemorgan's undressing of St. Louis writer Jeff Gordon on this topic last week was great.

Is Ralph Nader the Barry Bonds of politics?

Unlike Bonds, Nader is not suspected of committing any crime, although his detractors (political bigots) would like us to think he is.

No, Nader did not cause Al Gore, who ran as a saber-rattling neoliberal hawk in 2000, to lose. If you doubt this, ask Gore, who now admits that his election was stolen (eight years too late).

Nader and Bonds are the best at what they do, but both are being deleted from those fora that should be arguing for their inclusion.

Bonds and Baseball

I enjoyed reading the Dave Zirin article and ALL of the comments. To me, I agree with the guy who hasn't paid a bit of attention to Baseball for years and years, except that I DID pay attention to the home run efforts of Barry Bonds. I don't think about baseball now. I guess that's sort of the way it goes, but as a kid I used to love watching major league baseball.

Bond's Erasure

I really don't understand why people, including Bonds didn't expect this to happen...this is the legacy of major league baseball...this is a pattern that has been a part of this corrupt, racist institution since it's beginning...Bonds, notwithstanding.

The fact that baseball would not accept any responsibility in the matter of steroids/hgh usage in baseball, when it was clear from the commish's office all the way down the line, including the owners...and for them to not come out with a statement stating that this has been a difficult and unfortunate period for MLB and we are going to put it all behinds and move on, by starting everyone off with a clean slate from this moment on...as opposed to going along with the investigation which came up with a list, which allows MLB to play the "gotcha" game and transfer all the blame to these players.

Steroid and HGH users saved MLB and lined the owners pockets, when by rights half of the teams should have gone broke....

The hell with baseball....

Dorsey

Bonds as Trotsky?

If anyone is Trotsky it's Jose Canseco.

"is a violation of Bonds' rights and the unwritten social contract they have with fans."

Anything in that contract about steroids?

Co-sign w/Dorsey

Just ditto for me on that post.

Bonds

I do have to point out that the "purging" of Bonds from the Giants' ballpark is yet another media exaggeration. An SF Chronicle reporter toured the park before the season and didn't see any of the old Bonds stuff, and concluded that Magowan was trying to pretend Barry'd never been there. 'Tain't so. I was there on opening night, and there's a Bonds 762 plaque in center field, and a home run counter with Bonds, Aaron & Ruth and their numbers. Outside the park all the sidewalk plaques honoring Bonds's milestones are still there. The big banners are gone, the home run heroes are off the left field fence, but those would be a little awkward, considering that Barry's gone, and might be playing for someone else this season. I'd expect that once he's officially retired, there will probably be a statue outside the park, along with Mays and Marichal.

The Simmons quote is nonsense - I've had a bunch of those conversations - had one this morning right before I read this, in fact. How could anyone really not notice that Bonds isn't playing? I reckon Simmons only talks to the rest of the ESPN crew. It's ESPN and SI that wanted him gone, not the fans or players.

I do have the distinct feeling, though, that Barry is Bud Selig's biggest nightmare. He'd love to have Bonds dragged away in chains so he could stand up and say that all the game's problems are over (saved by the grand commissioner, of course!). Instead, his appointed villain refuses to shut up and go away, and the house of cards the commish constructed has been crumbling from a bunch of unexpected angles. Just imagine how Selig would feel if Barry not only came back and continued to put up spectacular numbers, but was found innocent of perjury, and let off the hook for PEDs! The only way to avoid that is by making clear that no team should touch him.

Of course Bud would never do such a thing - he's just standing there with his hands in his pockets. . . .

Not necessarily collusion

Does it always have to be a conspiracy? Could it just be that nobody wants this guy around? I lived in the Bay Area for years and watched this guy play. He is a "clubhouse cancer", that's no bull. The Giants were generally a fractious bunch beneath the surface, with a lot of resentments at the way Bonds handled himself both on the field and off. He's not a team player, can't field, demands special treatment for himself and his entourage, shows up opposing pitchers each time he flings his bat after a home run (and yes, that is an issue around the league), and he costs way too much for his ever more limited production. Oh yeah, and there's the stigma of steroids that will linger with him forever. He was safe in that happy little bubble called San Francisco. Take him out of that and put him on another team, he won't be nearly the box office draw.

Do I think Bonds has been unfairly singled out for the steroids allegations (among other legal battles, past, present and pending)? Maybe, but then again, I think Bonds has nobody to blame but himself for that. Bonds invited the attention as much as he seemingly despised it. Here's a guy for whom being a first-ballot Hall of Famer wasn't good enough. Can you imagine that? He had to juice up and get himself the sexiest record in sports. Do I have a problem with him being singled out? No. He was the first to do it.

Now he's nothing more than an albatross to any team that would sign him. I don't think it's collusion. I can't think of a good enough reason why anyone would want this guy and all the baggage that comes with him. Good riddens...

Meet Barry Bonds

I think about Barry everyday, the same with Sammy Sosa. I would love to have them hitting 3 and 4 in the Royals lineup.

Cancers?

We have to remember there have been other "cancers" in the clubhouse. Clemens' yearly dance with retirement was surely tiring to his teammates. Ozzie Guillen leaves sex dolls in the clubhouse and tears down the fans of Chicago. And the worst cancer: the former owner of my team, one G. W. Bush. I'd love to have Bonds hitting DH for the Rangers. Wish he could pitch, too. He may be out for himself, but he's not making a killing off of people's tax dollars and flipping that into the imperial presidency.

Barry Bonds

My theory is this: Bonds is only a few hits away from the magic 3,000 hit mark. No player who has reached that milestone, has been denied entry into the HOF.

Sports writers won't vote for him, because of the "steroid issue." However, they would almost have to vote for him if he got 3,000 hits.

If he can't play, he can't hit.

Beware of Simplifiers

Hank says,
"he's a schmuck in the clubhouse, and a pain in the ass personally. If he was 10 years younger, they would put up with him, as they did before."

-This is just stupid pontificating by Joe Public tuned into ESPN etc. Exactly how do you know this? Are you in the clubhouse? A player? A ball boy? Back scratcher? Jock washer?
You realize you're basically speaking for his teamates when you probably have no knowledge of his former team dynamics.
-------

Right now the Cubs are looking at Jim Edmonds if that isn't a sign that Bonds is black balled I don't know what is.

Dave great article as usual touching on important issues many ignore.

Don't Diss Stalin

Joe Stalin played a very small part, if any, in overthrowing the democratic Kerensky government in Russia. But once he got into power, he killed nearly every one of the goddamn Commie Bolshevik bastards who DID overthrow Kerensky and murder the Tsar. For that, Stalin deserves to be remembered as a great man.

Bonds

If you think Barry has gotten a bad rap from MLB Think Curt Flood!!!! This man has been buried by MLB. He was the first player to challenge the reserve clause (not a good thing for a Black Man to do in his time). Every baseball player should hold Curt in the highest regard. He started pushing the door open for better salaries. Players today would not be making the monies they make if it had not been for Curt Flood. He sacrificed his career so that other players would flourish and they get paid. Barry is getting the Curt Flood treatment no doubt about it. When they talk about home runs they will talk about Babe Ruth or Hank Aaron but you will not hear any reference to Barry.

Edmonds? 3000 Hits?

I can't believe Jim Edmonds draws any kind of comparison to Barry Bonds. (And I despise Barry Bonds.) The Cubs are considering Jim Edmonds for two reasons: A) They're the Cubs, and B) he won't command half the salary that Bonds will demand.

And to the 3000 hits guy, you mean Bonds doesn't have enough credentials numbers-wise to warrant a Hall of Fame ticket? All-time HR, 500-500 - cross that, 700-500 - gaudy walks, runs, RBI, slugging pct., etc., but it takes the 3000th hit to push him over the threshold? If he doesn't get in, it won't be because he didn't get enough hits.

How do any of you know he's been blackballed? If some team offered him fair market value, he wouldn't warrant $10 million a year. Do any of you think Bonds would play for under $15 million? Do any of you think he would broadcast an offer he considered a lowball?

Regardless of any answer to the above questions/suggestions, it doesn't change the fact that the man is a walking douche.

Edmond's Metal Shoulder

Cameron well put "they're the Cubs" .....well thought out and reasoned. Either you're southside white trash or one of the 'children of the corn' down in southern Illinois and a Card fan.

-no kidding he won't command a salary the bum was cut by San Diego, he's being paid lunch lady salary. But since when are the Cubs shy about spending?

I don't want to see Edmond's old bionic shoulder anywhere near Wrigley, and for that matter Barry either. But if I had to choose btw the two, even though the Cubs need a center fielder it'd be Barry all day.

-If some team offered Barry a contract it wouldn't be in secret...you actually think that wouldn't get out through some leak? The dam whitehouse can't keep secrets but MLB teams making offers to Bonds can? Ha GTFOH.

call it what it is

Thank you Dave Zirin for this piece. I was waiting for it, almost hoping it would be a little bit more biting....or cutting. Call it what it is......racism. And this all has to do with Bonds having the all time hitting title, which will be purged through all of this.

I'm not a fan of the USA Today. I call it the USA propaganda sheet. Available for free in every (almost) hotel in the country----to keep us all on the same page--so to speak--I say. Anyway, the NBA playoffs are in full swing and where do I have to go to read about it in the sports section of that paper??? Page 7 or 8!!! What is on the front page?? Baseball. Why??? Do I have to spell it out for you?? Look at the owners. Look at the managers. Look at the teams. Look at the audiences. Not the fans, the audience, the ones that can afford tickets. There is your answer. Now, to semi-steal a line from Matthew McConaugheys (spell) character in the movie, can't think of the title this moment..........imagine if Bonds was white.

shameful cowardly treatment of Bonds

I'm a Dodger fan. But I'm also a fan of justice. And such has not occurred for Barry Lamarr Bonds. It's amazing how such an abrasive character can become more sympatico simply by the unjust treatment at the hands of some insecure, small-dicked men. I wasn't much of a fan of Bonds...at least as a person. I always found him to be arrogant, surly, difficult. But over the last couple of years, as Bonds has been scapegoated-and has never refused to address the constant goading questions from corporate sports trainwreck-inducing-and-watching, media-Roger Clemens and Mark McGwire have been oh-so-surreptitiously been largely winked and nodded at by the corporate media while the corporate media has tutted and clicked its tongue occasionally, while never examining their shortcomings and misdeeds with the same intensity as it has harassed Barry.

Really, I didn't like Barry. I've been a Dodger fan 25 years and there's no team I dislike more than the Gnats. No player I dislike (just as a matter of course) as much as Barry. Of course this was/is largely for amusement but still, the fact that I can be convinced that this is an absolute witch-hunt for Barry is truly testament to the unhinged racism and corporate slavishness with which most of the corporate media work.

If it wasn't for Barry, that beautiful park in San Francisco would not be there. The suits did not get it built because people liked them. The stadium was built because of the all-time greatness of Barry Lamarr Bonds. Magowan and the ownership and leadership of the team was happy to ride Barry's broad shoulders to very nice profits in merchandising and luxury-suite sales. People talked about Barry's performance in the same way people would analyze Michael Jordan's performances ("Did you see that shot by Barry? How did he do that? OBP of .550....unbelievable"). And now he's persona non grata. I think you made a great analogy Dave. Magowan et al. took Barry throughout his tenure as the greatest hitter and never said a bad word about him. Indeed even last year, even when the press was bad about him, and Barry was finishing up his time with the Giants, not a peep about him publicly, although even then, the lack of recognition of what the man did was certainly an excellent example of foreshadowing. But you're absolutely right. He's been disappeared. A bit of cut and pasting; some fine Adobe Photoshop editing, some convenient exclusions by omission. Barry was never here. And again.....I was saying way back in about '02 that Clemens was juicing. I could never understand how a man getting that big that late in life didn't at least merit some discussion about such success. What's happened, and continues to happen, to Barry, is shameful.

I'm glad the Giants suck this year. I hope they suck forever for how they've treated this man.

"Free" Market

Dave Z - always on point.
But I wonder if the Bonds story simply reflects a larger problem with corporate America in that collusion and monopoly remain the status quo. If Bonds played football 25 years ago he would have a job in the USFL for sure. Capitalism is an inherently inhumane economic system, but it would be a hell of a lot better than what we have now.
Mainstream media has made the observation that owners want Bonds to disappear but fail to explore what they gain by this: the sooner the steroids issue fades away, the less likely the owners are to be exposed in their own complicity. Exploit labor, make money, deny responsibility. Maybe the owners aren't that smart or that organized but ultimately we need to understand what cost would prevent all these teams from signing him. It all starts with asking the right questions.

Barry Bonds and the Message board

I can't imagine this kind of discussion on Bonds or any other sports topic on any other website besides this one. Dave, who the hell are you getting to read about sports? or write about sports.

Bonds

Hank Siliver- who are we to judge a player's beavior in the clubhouse and how do we know if he was a pain? were you there? Bonds is blacklisted because he wouldn't play the game with reporters and he criticized the Bush regime about Katrina. Shame on the Giants. i hope they finish worse than the Yankees

Bonds emergence onto the scene.

dave you are truly looking years ahead of the curb in terms of the effect Bonds has on a game. people take for granted the presence bonds would have in the batters box. Though as bonds' perjury case unfolds the unfolding story of roger clemens who's on field performance saw a rebirth that many fireballers havent been able to come back from due to the constant wear and tear of tendons during the act of throwing. But who knows maybe it was love that saved his career. Ultimately as these two stars believed to have taken steroids watch baseball from afar, all attention has gone to Clemens as opposed to Bonds. The thing is (looking at Bonds' situation with court, fans and media) I do not believe this to be a bad thing. I believe you will see Bonds signed by midseason which will allow Bonds to suit up ina major league stadium once again sometime after the allstar game. Although Bonds not playing opening day should be seen as an injustice, the silence is goldy for Bonds which is something that could only benefit the situation for his family. Since the attention of the media and others opinions about his character have never affected him yet, im curious to see what the next chapter for bonds is.

Bring Back Bonds!

Thanks as usual Dave for validating my opinions I argue daily with my coworkers. It is frustrating to hear in my break room intelligent and compassionate people(teachers) spew the ignorance and rhetoric of espn. The most common excuse they give is the clubhouse thing in which I retort that the main incident between Bonds and a teammate was a fight with a lying idiot Jeff Kent. I also here the comment from an earlier poster about him being paid too much for a part time player. Is david Ortiz a part time player? Was edgar Martinez a part time player? Bonds could have put up 35 home runs an 90-100 rbi's as a dh in the right ballpark. Wake up baseball, erasing barry Bonds does not help the image of your game. Although dave touched on the role of ESPN, hey and other bigoted sports media, which seems to be most of sports media, is in an absolute horrid state right now. Barry has always been disliked by the media, even before the Balco stuff because he doesn't respect them. Guess what you arrogant fools, he has valid reasons to not respect you and your job as a journalist should be to ignore his personal feelings and do your job reporting sports in an unbiased manner. I have thought for a long time that pro sports leagues should find ways to distance themselves from ESPN which has become a tabloid news outlet in which the arrests of a handful of payers overshadow the on field and positive off field actions of the majority of pro athletes.

BONDS TOOK STEROIDS

THAT IS THE REASON HE IS NOT BEING PERSUED BY ANY TEAMS. BONDS TOOK STEROIDS, YOU NEED TO UNDERSTAND THAT

not so tough to figure

MLB had to sacrifice someone to the steroid scandal. Why not the biggest SOB in the sport?

I think we want to be careful making Bonds out to be anything more than what he is. I understand the temptation to make him out to be a victim of racism and a martyr, too well, but it just doesn't fit. He's a lawbreaker, albeit one who can hit a ball, but it's no surprise that he's not welcome, any more than it's a surprise that OJ doesn't get invited to the Super Bowl.

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Barry Bonds vs. KKK HOFamers

Dave,as an African-Canadian baseball fan since '58,I believe you are likely aware that perhaps seven MLB Hall Of Famers were Ku Klux Klansmen,yet Barry Bonds'(and others')steroids
use is enough to ban them from Cooperstown???
TALK ABOUT RACIST HYPOCRISY FROM THE
"LORDS OF BASEBALL!!!"And they wonder why
black kids have abandoned the sport?

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Dave Zirin is the author of the book: "Welcome to the Terrordome: The Pain, Politics and Promise of Sports" (Haymarket). You can receive his column Edge of Sports, every week by going to dave@edgeofsports.com.
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Contact him at edgeofsports@gmail.com