Thursday, March 09, 2006


Eventually, the institution of baseball will pay a steep price for what it has allowed to take place within its confines. But, in the short run, they're going to add to their coffers as Bonds closes in on Ruth and Aaron's home run records.

Now that a new book has been written about Bonds, the steroid issue stinks even more. The press will dog Bonds, dog the Giants' coaches, and dog the players.

Like Pete Rose, Bonds owns this lie and will not let loose of it, even though it will cause damage to his team, the institution of baseball, and in the end, his family's legacy.

According to the latest book, Bonds decided to give steroids a try in 1998. And, according to his stats, I believe it. Looking at his stats, and by stats, I really mean, "home runs (HR)," it's difficult not to come away thinking something is wrong. The casino business has a term for it: "JDLR"--"just doesn't look right."

Look at the stats for Hank Aaron, then compare them to Barry Bonds'. Their careers are similar in many respects, too. Aaron was consistent in HRs over his long career; Bonds' was too. But, in 2000, at a point in his career when all players' production begins to sag, something happened to his stats. They were not the stats of a mere mortal giant; they were super-human, and since '00 they have never let off. Even in his last season, 2005, though Bonds only played in 14 games, his percentages for HRs never changed.

Numbers don't lie; you can't explain these numbers, unless you use the "S" word. And since Bonds isn't suing anyone for saying these things, isn't standing up and explaining how he posted these unbelievable numbers, I'll just let common sense take over.

I'm a cynic when it comes to this steroid thing, so I figure Bonds will break through Ruth's HR record quickly, then he'll march toward Aaron's record this season. The press will drive this quest for the home run record straight to the bank, second in line behind the owners. And, even though the record will forever be tainted, fans will flock to the stadiums, drink those $9 beers, watch on TV, buy the clothing, while baseball counts the money. Sucker money. Fans are stupid like that.

When I say "march toward Aaron's record," I don't mean alone. I think Bonds will have help: Watch Bonds' stats for "intentional walks."

After all, baseball thinks the fans are a bunch of suckers, anyway.

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