Well, it’s in the books – Barry Bonds has 756 home runs, more than anyone else in the history of baseball. After a ten minute delay which saw Bonds standing triumphantly and the Nationals players adjusting their jockstraps, the celebration was over and the world stopped holding its breath. He was then lifted from the game.
I don’t blame the pitcher for giving up the homer – on a 3-2 pitch, he tried to sneak a fastball by Bonds inside, which was obviously the best decision. But he did tip his cap to Bonds, undoubtedly because Bonds has such respect for the game, its fans, and the general policy of honesty and integrity which the United States’ national pastime should represent.
What did upset me was that no one was ballsy enough to get in the base path with Bonds as he rounded the bases. I’m sure some nuts tried, but no one got close enough to get immortalized, and that’s a real shame.
Writing about this situation impartially is impossible, so I’ll just come out and say it – Bonds is a detriment to the game. He has admittedly used substances which are now banned by baseball (and who knows what else he’s ingested to secure such bulk), and his ability to exploit loopholes and juice himself up to superhuman status is unconscionable. His continued diminishment of the media and any non-Giants fans does little to garner him support.
Before the issue is raised, it should be noted that racism is far from the motivation for any disapproval of Bonds. Hank Aaron, the man whose record was eclipsed by Bonds, is also black, and I have no trouble at all accepting his record as the valid one. His ability to hit 755 home runs without the aid of artificial enhancements is truly admirable, especially since he was subjected to so much discrimination while doing so. So no, it’s really just the steroids.
Perhaps the biggest problem is that Bonds was actually very good before he started up on the ‘roids. Because of this, the typical excuse of “I had to start doing it because everyone else was” is invalid; Bonds was perfectly capable of excelling over others without any additional aid. Perhaps he was incapable of hitting the hundreds of home runs he hit after age 35, but we’ll never know because he broke down and cheated. Doing so sets a horrible example for children and only contributes to the downfall of baseball’s reputation. In a post-game interview, Bonds emphatically stated that his record was not “tainted,” but that’s precisely what it is.
The best news of the night: with the “record” now his, Bonds may begin to fade from the spotlight…at least, until his indictments for perjury and/or tax evasion progress, so his glory may be short-lived.
Oh, and let’s not forget Alex Rodriguez, hot on Bonds’ heels with over 500 homers – and quite possibly innocent of steroid abuse. Maybe we’ll have a new legitimate home run champion in a few years.