Thursday, April 14, 2011

Bonds, Barry Bonds

Of course I'd rather be writing about James Bond (and there actually is news today that the Bond movie franchise will continue on), but there is no ignoring the Barry Bonds verdict. Bonds is of course the poster child for the steroids-PED era.

Starting out as a thin, Hank Aaron-like hitter, Bonds evolved in to a cartoonish figure. The fact that he broke Aaron's recode made him the lightning rod for the whole sordid mess. Maybe it shouldn't come as surprise that the jury couldn't convict Bonds of lying to Congress.

But maybe it all doesn't matter much. The whole game lacks credibility on the issue. Neither Bonds nor the owners, the commissioner, nor all the players can escape responsibility. All of them, for different reasons, ignored the problem as it grew. And then when the truth came out, they pretended they had never know anything was amiss.

So here we are. The federal government spends years and bushels of cash to try to prove a baseball player lied. And they fail. And the game keeps raking in cash (although attendance has dipped a bit this year.) Just as we have seen with bank failures, politicians' lies and other scandals, the media sounds the alarm and the the public shrugs and business returns to normal.

It's unfortunate that cheating is now ignored, expected or even accepted. But that's the state of baseball now. So if you can, enjoy the great plays and great athletes. I still do. But in the back of my mind I always wonder which players are using what substances to get ahead.

1 comment:

  1. I dunno, I'm kind of done with the whole PED argument. If MLB had wanted to keep them out of the game, they would have made steps to do so a long time ago. I don't see much difference between guys like Bonds, McGwire and Clemens using steroids or whatever and players from the 60's and 70's (like Aaron) using uppers. Illegal outside of baseball and frowned upon, but no real testing or punishment for using.

    Bonds, prior to 1999, was the best baseball player I had ever seen and he was well on his way to the HoF. Sadly, that wasn't enough for him when he saw what McGwire and Sosa were doing in the summer of 1998. Chicks dig the long ball, I get it. But for me it doesn't diminish what he did before and I think he belongs in the Hall. Absolutely.

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