NFL Game of the Month!


July 2006

Baseball picksJuly 1, 2006

755 is better than 756

Bonds has finally lifted the pressure of passing Ruth and now has to face the once towering and (probably) unreachable mark of Hank Aaron. Make no mistake, what Bonds did was truly incredible. Barry Bonds without the steroid controversy was always hall of fame material. His speed and ability to play the outfield were always present even before his torrid homerun streak. But did he cheat to get where he is?

Do I think Bonds used performances enhancing drugs: Yes. Was what he did illegal: No. Was it fair? That's a question for which there is no right answer. Do I think it's fair? No way.

Just because baseball was asleep at the wheel – I mean purposefully looking out the back window, doesn't mean taking performance enhancing drugs is right or fair.

Don't think he did it? Stop kidding yourself. For Bonds to make the jump from a decent hitter to the powerhouse hitter he became in just a few years, is just unfathomable. Normally, as players get more experience, they become contact hitters such as John Olerud or Cal Ripken.  Very rarely do they get older and then go on to crank 60+ and 70+ homeruns.  It makes me laugh just thinking some people actually think that Bonds hits such homeruns without any type of help. For a gown man's head to grow like that is crazy. For him to peak at 40+ years of age is ridiculous. Combine all of these things, along with his associations with the peddlers of these drugs and you have an iron-clad open and shut case. Bonds took steroids and it helped him hit more home runs.

In fairness to Barry, despite all the controversy and the animosity he faces outside of the Bay area, he has held up pretty well. The Babe faced rumors that he was corking his bat. Was he?  Who knows. Yet, the media lauded him and praised him because he was a likeable man. He was the "Bambino".  The role model for decades to come.The Babe was a notorious womanizer and had some bad traits, yet the public for the most did not come to know this simply because he was liked by the media. Bonds is not liked. But he has no one to blame for that but himself. All of his recent hardships he has brought upon himself. If he was a nice guy and a likeable player, he wouldn't be getting half the grief he is getting now. But when you cheat, and your an ass, you deserve what comes your way when the cheating is exposed.

Long story short, what Bonds did was techinically legal in my opinion, yet morally wrong as he was well aware (he was hiding it then and denies it now despite the evidence). Should he be a Hall of Famer? In the end it really doesn't matter. Bonds has tarnished his reputation forever. He is no Hank Aaron. What Aaron did, given his circumstances, was more difficult. Hank, to this day, has never had one allegation for "juicing" or "corking" his bat like Babe and Sammy have faced. He faced far more racism and difficulties while playing ball than Bonds ever has. Aaron played in some of the toughest home towns to play for a black athlete in both Wisconsin for the Milwaukee Braves and then in the deep south for the Atlanta Braves.

So even if Bonds hits 756, even if he did it without juicing, Aaron is baseball's true home run king. Bonds can never touch that.