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Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Bonds: It's Required To Give Him His Due

As Barry Bonds hoisted his powerful arms up into the air after launching the shot heard 'round the world, a great burden was lifted.

Not just Barry's burden. Not just the ever increasing weight placed upon him by a vicious and inhumane media. But a burden felt by all baseball fans. A burden carried by all people.

And now that the chase is over. The quest conquered. The haj complete. We must all look to heal from the damage that the mainstream media has inflicted upon us during the course of Barry's chase.

The best way to heal? Exalt in the majesty of Mr. Bonds' triumph.

If the media can finally lay bias to rest and simply give the new Home Run King the fair treatment and respect due, baseball can recover. Bonds can recover. We can all recover.

The time has come to treat Bonds as we have treated every other player that has performed at super human levels and attained unmatched supremacy.

Is Bonds the first player to be accused of "cheating"?

How many players in the Hall of Fame had reputations as cheaters? How many pushed the limits of the technology available during their careers? Ty Cobb? Gaylord Perry? How many others?

Yet, we kind of snicker about Gaylord Perry and his spit balls. About Ty Cobb and his sharpening his cleats and other tactics. And we vote them into the Hall of Fame with nary a word of dissention.

But, Barry Bonds comes along and is crucified. Grand Juries are convened. Expose books are written. Fans are whipped into a frenzy and urged to take an indignant stance to his accomplishment.

What did Bonds do that separates him from all the others that have operated in a gray area, or just plain cheated in sports?

Bonds played in an era in which MLB purposely and willfully turned its collective back to what was going on with a large portion of the players. The league didn't conduct testing. The league didn't even officially ban many substances. While players began to look like bodybuilders and home runs flew out of parks at unheard of rates, the commissioner and the owners counted receipts. They posed as those three monkeys with their hands over their eyes, ears and mouths: hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil.

And now, when they are called onto the carpet for what transpired, for what they allowed and encouraged through complicit silence...now, we are to all accept that Bonds is the anti-christ in all this?

Players like Bonds are driven. What makes them great is their will to succeed. Part of that is to excel through any means necessary. And, if there is a loop hole in the system, they will find it. In fact, we'd argue that they are encouraged to find it.

Lance Armstrong is a hero. Beloved by the media, and therefore the fans. But, there is more dirt out there on him than any superstar athlete. More individuals connect him to doping than any athlete. He has been returned dubious test results.

But no mention of placing an asterisk next to his name in the record books.

Armstrong is cherished.

It's time to cherish Bonds. To honor his accomplishments. To look past the accusations and the character assaults. It's time to understand that he played the game during an era that encouraged and allowed players to take that extra step. To go above and beyond normal training methods.

Baseball is redefining itself and the owners and commissioner have now been forced to address the issue. But that doesn't change the fact that for decades they silently sat by and watched. And Bonds should not be the lone scapegoat burned in effigy by the media.

MLB created Barry Bonds. He is of their doing. MLB's very own "frankenstein".

To unleash him, and then pretend he didn't become exactly what MLB expected or wanted is the greatest lie in all of this.

The key to moving forward now that the chase has ended is honoring baseball's greatest creation.

Baseball purists argue that Bonds is bad for the game. That his being the Home Run King tarnishes the purity of the game.

Well, any organization that would silently stand by and pretend to not see what went on, and then later accept no responsibility for it, is an impure entity.

The only pure entity in all of this?

Bonds' swing.

Honor it. So we can all heal. Together.

35 comments:

NOI rules!!1 said...

great post

Dave the Wave said...

bonds is a cheater.

cheaters have no honor.

therefore, they receive no honor.

Burnsy said...

Barry Bonds is a god among mere mortals, sir.

Oops Pow Surprise said...

Dave, that's shamefully naive.

Is it dishonorable when offensive linemen get away with holding on nearly every play of a football game? They do. It's a violation of the rules, but it happens anyway.

Is it dishonorable when a basketball player attempts to block a shot and gets both ball and wrist, and is not whistled for a foul? It's a violation of the rules, but it happens anyway.

And yet here stands Brother Barry, our brother in arms and armor, never accused by the league of cheating, and you condemn him!

Why?

Even if you take the allegations at face value (in and of itself a clear admission of bigotry) and condemn them, they are, as Brother NOIS quite astutely pointed out, standard practice for great athletes across all eras and across all sports. You cannot reasonably renounce Brother Barry without simultaneously renouncing sports as you know them. No, it seems quite clear that your beef with Brother Barry is much more basic. He is black, and you find that unacceptable.

It is people like you, Sir, who keep Dr. King's dream from becoming reality.

Five Pound Bag said...

If Barry Bonds did not exist, we would have to invent him.

That's deep like a Bonds home run right there. Sirs.

Dave the Wave said...

"Is it dishonorable when a basketball player attempts to block a shot and gets both ball and wrist, and is not whistled for a foul? It's a violation of the rules, but it happens anyway."

ummm...those are missed calls, douchenozzle.

"It is people like you, Sir, who keep Dr. King's dream from becoming reality. "

actually, it's the jigs that cheat and the jigs that won't admit cheating is wrong that keep it from reality.

Dave the Wave said...

"That's deep like a Bonds home run right there."

oh yea, saying that bonds should be hailed as great because he isn't the only assbag that took juice is deep.

as deep as the kiddie pool.

Oops Pow Surprise said...

"ummm...those are missed calls, douchenozzle."

I prefer "Sir." Please, some civility.

Further, they are acts committed by players knowing that they will likely escape punishment from the referees! Ask any linemen about "the trenches," and you will hear stories of a litany of rules, both professional and ethical, ignored without any punitive action.

Sir, that is technically "cheating." And it is certainly part of sports. Where is your outrage? Where is your protestation when Dan Dierdorf is handed a microphone (in and of itself a heinous act)? Did you picket the inductions in Canton when Bruce Matthews was honored?

No, you rage against Brother Barry because the bigoted media, long scornful of the fact that he has not forgotten what Brothers Hank, Bobby, and Willie went through, have made sure that you would be compelled to.

Oops Pow Surprise said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lgf said...

I don't know how you do it. Perhaps steroids. But this post is another winner.

lgf said...

"Even if you take the allegations at face value (in and of itself a clear admission of bigotry)"

Interesting. But how is that an admission of bigotry?

Sebastian said...

Barry Bonds is the Home Run King.

Clean or not; given his combative relationship with everyone in the sports world from teammates to fans to the press, he won't be a favorite. It is what it is.

Fans will look to Junior and A-Rod, rooting harder for them to break Bond's record, if possible.

My Hero Zero said...

Sir, once again you have shed the harsh light of righteousness on the cockroach of mass media hypocricy! Bravo, sir, bravo.

Martin said...

"bonds is a cheater."

Sir, remember, the premise of this blog is to deal with facts. Can you direct me to where Brother Bonds has been CONVICTED of an offense? Or where, sir, he has been disciplined in any fashion by MLB?

I await your factual based response, sir.

Dave the Wave said...

"Fans will look to Junior and A-Rod, rooting harder for them to break Bond's record, if possible. "

holy shit!!!

ladies and gentleman...

it's CAPT OBVIOUS!!


wow!

nation_of_islam_sportsblog said...

"Bravo, sir, bravo. "


Sir, please....give a bravo to yourself.

We couldn't do it without you and those like you.

Dave the Wave said...

" Can you direct me to where Brother Bonds has been CONVICTED of an offense?"

well, other than the fact that waterhead ADMITTED he used "the cream"...nope.

But, I guess ADMITTING he used a steroid just isn't fact based, is it??

Sebastian said...

Wave Dave.

To quote the great rodent superhero Mighty Mouse'

"Heeeere I come to save the daaayyyy!

"Captain Obvious" indeed. He never had a cartoon serial.....

Love Bonds all you want, he's going to need it.

Dave the Wave said...

"Love Bonds all you want, he's going to need it. "


ok, maybe you aren't capt obvious.

love bonds? i been saying the guy is a CHEATER. i anxiously await his federal trial and future incarceration.

THAT i'd love.

Mr.Poindexter said...

mI haven't heard any serious discussion of barring Bonds from the HOF-he was headed there before performance enhancers(unlike Sosa,Palmiero,McGuire,and most other users-Sheffield will be an interesting case)and deserves enshrinement.However,just as Cobb is rarely mentioned without allusions to his being a racist prick and Perry is synonomous with spitballs,Bonds will forever have the virtual asterisk attached to his records in the minds of many fans.

Jarrett Carter said...

Game of Shadows presents some compelling evidence, but I think judgment should be reserved until al doubt is removed from the implications on Bonds.

Nevertheless, its a great record and I believe most people marvel in seeing things like this broken, ill-gotten or not.

Sebastian said...

Bonds and the Hall of Fame?

He'll get in, and absent being found guilty of sterioid trafficking, he won't have an asterisk next to his name.

But the damage is already done. If he is in fact clean and untainted, then he didn't do himself any favors in how he's handled this situation.

lgf said...

"If he is in fact clean and untainted, then he didn't do himself any favors in how he's handled this situation."

thats what i like about Bonds. He is his own man and does things his own way. If he does like a question, or the person asking it, he'll tell you about. He isn't going to dance a jig for the media just because they can say ridiculous things about him.

He knows who he is and doesn't need to be validated by the vultures in the media.

Oops Pow Surprise said...

I believe most people marvel in seeing things like this broken, ill-gotten or not.

Sir, it seems clear that the only things most people want to see broken are the 14th and 15th Amendments.

Sebastian said...

LGF,

It's not about dancing a jig for the media. It's about taking care of yourself and your image as a public figure. If Bonds had a friend who was a killer, that's one thing that's easy to say "well, he's standing by his friend who clearly needs help and support."

But he's never been fan-friendly, which isn't neessarily a bad thing. Until you end up in this doping scandal. Without an independent source of goodwill, you're left largely on your own, without a counterbalance to mitigate what the press says.

Especially if he wasn't doping.

But if he wants to be the rugged aloof figure, there's some drawbacks to that as well.

ZEKE said...

"Bonds will forever have the virtual asterisk attached to his records in the minds of many fans."

you think?

wow, you are deep.

Mr.Poindexter said...

You think?

cowboy dan said...

There has been entirely too much stuff written on Barry Bonds. Overkill. I'm just sick of it all.

That being said, I think everyone should read this post. Well done.

RockyJasons said...

My friend --
I generally agree with the undercurrent of your post, although I see no reason to "cherish" Mr. Bonds or his drug enhanced accomplishments. Also, I'm curious of your statement that Mr. Armstrong has "returned dubious results." Is this fact or conjecture? Please cite references.

NOIS said...

Sir,

If you recall. That B set of samples from the late 90s. That were still archived at the French lab. That tested positive for EPO.

Lance's lawyers tried to throw mudd at the "chain of custody", and the story kind of died.

RockyJasons said...

Mr. Nois -
Perhaps the story kind of died because the "mudd" had credence and could not be honestly removed. Certainly no demonstration of fact.

nation_of_islam_sportsblog said...

"Mr. Nois -
Perhaps the story kind of died because the "mudd" had credence and could not be honestly removed. Certainly no demonstration of fact. "

Sir, it is a fact that those samples tested postive.

Perhaps it died because America loves its white hero who beat cancer?

Perhaps?

Although, keep it coming, we love your spirit. And your bias.

Where are the positive steroid tests for Bonds?

There haven't even been any hinted at. The only thing connecting him to steroids is the word of others.

And read a bit about Lance.

Way more people in cycling placing him as being involved in PEDs.

Clearly, you've established your unrelenting bias and your disinterest in being fair and open minded.

If that was what you were trying to accomplish.

Job well done.

RockyJasons said...

My Friend --

Keep your biking shorts on. You may recall my general agreement with the original post. I certainly know that there has been no positive test results for Mr. Bond and the conjecture for him is purely based on his shoe size growing from 11 to 13 after his first few seasons in the major league.

My only point was to question the conjecture towards Mr. Armstrong. Were the French labs results truly positive, one would have expected at least one of Lance Armstrong's French titles to be vacated. You may recall from your readings that the French, much like yourself, have no love for Mr. Armstong.

nation_of_islam_sportsblog said...

Sir, the only thing we have noticed is your undying allegiance to the legend (which should, based on the accounts of innumerable witness, cyclists, proteges and doctors, be completely tarnished and asterisked beyond recognition...or at least to the level Bonds has)of the great white cyclist.

Your incredible willingness to discount any and all of the thousand or so accounts/tests/even his own admission to using EPO is a clear sign of your reprehensible bias.

We request that you refrain from tainting us with the descriptor "friend".

We are no friend to the biased mind.

RockyJasons said...

My Good Fellows -

It is interesting that Mr. Armstrong and his assitants had such success in causing the story to "just sort of die", yet at least two competitors in this years Tour of France had no such good fortune. Nor, if memory serves, did the previous years short reigned champion manage to get the story to "just sort of die." Perhaps you have some sort of theory of conspiracy for how Lance Armstrong was able to induce this "dying" of the story?

What is clear is that you disparage Mr. Armstrong's accomplishments for exactly the same alleged and unproven acts as continue to follow Mr. Bonds--whom you believe should be cherished. I find this confusing given the high fairmindedness you purport to maintain. I also find it interesting that you have now introduced Mr. Armstrong's skin color into our discussion as a differentiator--what is your point here?

And why exactly do you hate Lance Armstrong?