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Bonds Goes Down

Quick and dirty, for your consideration: Barry Bonds has (finally) been indicted on perjury and obstruction of justice charges.

As I’m sure everyone knows, an indictment doesn’t necessarily indicate any actual guilt. But in Bonds’ case…well, come on.

Thoughts?

30 comments to Bonds Goes Down

  • random dude

    What information do you think they have now that they didn’t have before? Something from the latest Mitchell report or what? I’m real curious to see what they dug up.

  • df1570

    Thank the Lord this indictment has come down.

    Now we can finally get all the evidence uncovered and take care of two pressing Hall of Fame issues.

    a) keep Bonds out of Cooperstown
    b) remove Gaylord Perry from Cooperstown

  • neal s

    Cheating just isn’t a cut-and-dried issue, Drew. There is a difference between what Bonds did and what Perry did.

    Throwing a spitball is technically cheating, no doubt about it. But if you want to rail on Perry for that you’d better comb through the record and find every HoF pitcher who ever grew his fingernail long, or stashed an emery board in his pocket, or rubbed some pine tar on his bill. While you’re at it you’d better start looking at every hitter who might have ever used a questionable bat, every team that might have planted someone on the roof to steal signs, and on down the line.

    I don’t like cheating, but there’s cheating that’s part of the game and there’s cheating that makes an end run around the game. Introducing altered body chemistry into the equation just isn’t the same as doctoring a ball.

    Bonds-Perry isn’t quite apples and oranges, but it damn sure isn’t apples and apples.

  • Joe the Guy

    this arguement is irrelevant because Bonds is boycotting the hall of fame because of the * ball

    DF’s perry analogy is hard to argue against, but it seems like a stretch to defend barry

    why are you stretching to defend barry?

    if he hadn’t jumped on the juice then he would have been a doubles / steals guy, still a power hitter, better outfielder -> he killed his own chances of being an incredible all around player by going after the spotlight that homeruns were getting

  • neal s

    Wait, who’s defending Barry? Definitely not me. My point is that what he did is worse than what Perry did. And I’m not sure Drew is defending Bonds, either. I think he’s saying that if we want to keep Bonds out then we need to look at other known cheaters. I happen to think he’s oversimplifying, but it’s a fair enough point.

    Good point about Bonds sacrificing an all-around game at the expense of homers. He didn’t realize just how good he had it.

  • dan the man

    someone’s gotta take the big fall for steroids and it might as well be the asshole of the group – karma catches up to everybody, barry. now go away for 5 years until the hall of fame debate inevitably comes

  • df1570

    I’m sure if you knew how many guys in baseball “cheated” – somehow – you’d be stunned.

    But you don’t know.

    But you DO know that Perry cheated.

    And he shouldn’t be in the Hall of Fame.

    And neither should Bonds, of course.

    And he won’t be.

    But Gaylord Perry gets a free pass, probably because he’s white and wasn’t a career asshole…but if it looks like a duck and walks like a duck, it’s probably a duck. Perry cheated. End of story.

  • Kona_Boy

    debating the fine line of cheating (Shoeless Joe Jackson, Gaylord Perry, Pete Rose, and Bonds could get their own Hall of Shame that put their careers in perspective, could be a learning experience for all) is fine by me, but why are we celebrating Bonds being railroaded by the Feds? Obstruction of justice is the most bogus abuse of Federal/Prosecutorial power since “interstate commerce clause”, they can lie to you, but heaven forbid if you follow their lead.

  • Joe the Guy

    Kona

    I agree wholeheartedly – the government has no right messing around in baseball – I would like to see my tax dollars spent on something, ANYTHING, besides a massive investigation into a freakin game…..

    DF

    tossing around The Race Card…..LAME…..

    spitballs and steroids are not the same duck….

    but like I said earlier it’s hard to argue against

    I just don’t understand why you’re so into it.

    Does Perry’s presence in the Hall really bother you that much? Start a petition. I’d sign it.

    I would love to see what players/coaches think of the Perry/Bonds analogy

  • df1570

    I love how some of you cats always throw in the “spitballs and steroids” aren’t the same thing.

    If a guy gets caught throwing a spitball in a game, what happens?

    He gets thrown out.

    Why?

    Because it’s against the rules to doctor the ball.

    So, if it’s against the rules, and you do it, that’s cheating.

    You hair-splitters can keep on trying to split the atom all you want, but Gaylord Perry cheated.

    The “race card” isn’t lame at all when you try and determine why Perry was allowed in – in the first place – and remains in. You can’t tell me that part of what has happened with Bonds over the years can’t be traced to race. He’s been crushed by the fans and the media and some part of that – I have no idea the percentage but I’ll guess…70% – is because he’s a black player who is also seemingly a malcontent. You can dance around that all you want, but you know it’s true.

    So, as for Perry, I’d like to know why he skates through this unscathed, that’s all.

    It’s no secret that he was “well-liked” and considered “one of the good old boys” during his day because of his ability to throw the spitter and (semi) get away with it.

    Here’s the funny thing: No one has EVER proved, really, that taking steroids can make you hit the ball better.

    But it has been proven that corking your bat, throwing a spitter, etc. gives you a definite advantage.

    I’m not sure why you guys are willing to give Perry a pass but you want to string Bonds up by his balls.

    Bonds is going to jail, by the way. He’ll get 5 years, 3 will be suspended and he’ll serve about 10 months. So says a fed friend of mine who knows how stuff like this usually comes down.

  • Andrew in Rochester

    What about Mark McGwire, who wasn’t disapproved of when he played, but since has been the target of a lot of scorn that is 100% because he cheated and won’t admit to it, just like Bonds? He gets a ton of hate but is definitely not black.

    I’m not saying race doesn’t play into it at all, but 70%? No way – it’s 70% because he treats the media with disrespect, and according to Game of Shadows , treats some of his teammates rather similarly.

    And of course he goes to jail – the feds don’t indict you unless they’re 90% sure they’ll win. And that’ll weigh on this debate, because Gaylord Perry was definitely a cheat (as was a bevy of others, including our own Baltimore Orioles and especially Wee Willy Keeler, who were known to shave bats, hide extra balls on the field, push runners off base, etc. etc.) – but none of them went to jail.

  • dan the man

    Look, spitballs were around when the game was invented. Steroids were not. Technically, they are both cheating but that doesn’t make them the same thing because one of them is a crime and one of them is not. You can’t just be so obtuse and overlook that, Drew.

  • neal s

    You’re overplaying your hand, Drew.

    If your point is that cheating is cheating — no gray area, no degrees of wrongdoing — and that all cheaters should be kept out of the Hall, then make that point. It’s not very nuanced, but at least it makes a modicum of sense. This tactic you’ve chosen of latching onto Gaylord Perry and using him to prove hypocrisy and conspiracy just clouds the real issue.

    Nobody ever said that Perry, and probably countless others, didn’t cheat. My point is that there are different kinds of cheating, and that some are worse than others. I believe that, yes, steroids are worse than spitballs. We can get into why if you’d like.

    As far as the race issue, I’m too young to give a damn about Perry one way or another. His whiteness has absolutely nothing to do with my analysis of your comparison.

    @Kona: great point. We really shouldn’t go out of our way to cheer the Feds just because we might not personally like their chosen target. I don’t really have any interest in seeing Bonds go to jail — his punishment should be limited to the game of baseball and the courts of history and public opinion.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    drew you’re way off on this one.

    by your logic, i suppose if it were discovered that a bernie williams or a tony gwynn were found to have used steroids the outcry would be similar to this because they’re black? gimme a break.

    it’s like saying the cops went after david berkowitz because of anti-semitism.

    racism is absolutely embedded in american society and it’s one of the saddest and most shameful things about america, past and present.

    to point to it in this instance cheapens it and makes a mockery of the real racism that holds people back on a daily basis.

  • dan the man

    hard to argue with that, BBM.

    i don’t really think bonds needs to go to jail either. he just needs to be a proven liar in court in front of the public. and never play in the bigs again. that would suffice, in my opinion. am i against his indictment? ehhh not really. but i am hoping that the feds back off of baseball for awhile after they finally nail the big one. fine. get the big guy and rub a few score of other names in the dirt while you’re at it. it’s good for the game. but then leave it to the testing and to MLB. there’s no government in baseball!

    when will baseball players learn that the american sports-interested public loves a good confession? all u have to do is tell the truth, give a sincere apology, say you’ll never do it again, etc and in a year or so, you’re alright. you’re the dude that did steroids when it wasn’t banned, and who told the truth, and so is one of the good guys. right? why is that so hard?

  • df1570

    Actually, Ben, you made my point for me, but you used the wrong guys. You brought up Gwynn and Williams…but I think you focused on the wrong guy.

    Mark McGwire used steroids, right? White, right?

    I don’t see or read anywhere near the mud-slinging for McGwire that I do for Bonds. Not even close. Yet, McGwire was a steroid user that broke the home run record while on the juice and the outcry against him didn’t even come close to the Bonds witch hunt.

    I’m saying that part of the country’s hate for Bonds has to do with the fact that he’s black. For people to say “he mistreated the media” as a means of determining whether or not Bonds is getting treated well or not…give me a break…since when did people start caring about how the media was treated by the athletes? I’ve been mistreated by the Orioles for the last two years…I’ll look back and check the archives but I don’t see any of you coming to MY aid on that note.

    Bonds is disliked in this country because he’s not truthful and because he’s black. I certainly don’t agree with that, as evidenced by the fact that I think Gaylord Perry is just as much of a cheater as Bonds was and he’s white – and I’m white…but Perry’s a cheater, no matter what his color. McGwire wasn’t truthful on the stand that day and we all know he used steroids. Why haven’t we all chased him around 24×7 to expose him as a fraud?

    I continue to marvel at how many of you use the old “spitballs were used forever” line and somehow that makes it OK. In that regard, what if guys keep on using steroids for the next 60 years and in 2067, some guy hits 110 home runs in a season and breaks the record because he found a “new” steroid that gives him super-powers…will you all be telling your grandkids, “it’s OK, guys have been using steroids forever.”??

    These cats that cheat have no business in the game. Gaylord Perry cheated. You all can dance around and come up with all the loose excuses you want, but they let him in the Hall of Fame after he had been CAUGHT cheating.

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    drew, does race play a part in this case? yes

    did race play a part in the michael vick case? yes

    it plays a part in everything that happens in this country because frankly we’ve never gotten over our past and there are douchebags everywhere.

    the point you’re missing is that 90 percent of the reaction bonds is getting is because he’s a GRADE A ASSHOLE as in, an asshole superstar that comes around once in a generation, if that.

    you proved my point when you brought up mcgwire.
    everybody loved him because he was humble and went out of his way to treat people with respect. as a result, he’ll never get the acidic response to his cheating that bonds is getting. that is exactly how america would respond if tony gwynn or barry larkin or bernie williams or ken griffey got caught.

    that said, do you see anybody standing up for mcgwire even though he was beloved? no. he cheated and he’s going to pay the price for the rest of his life.

    stop being an apologist for such an asshole under the guise of righteousness.

  • Andrew in Rochester

    Drew, it would help your case, and make me personally definitely side with you, if you found a white guy who was a massive dick (except for Dick Van Dyke) who was treated extremely well in a post 1960 timeframe.

    I honestly can’t think of one.

    Also, in regards to the spitter (and I agree that it’s a stupid argument to say that it’s an acceptable form of cheating), I submit to you the case of Kenny Rogers vs. Manny Corpas.

    Both were caught by television cameras probably throwing spitters. One is a white skinned southern man, one is a dark skinned Panamanian. Neither was made into a big deal.

  • df1570

    Big Ben…Griffey IS an asshole. Always has been. He’s just a quiet asshole. Speaking of assholes, do you not think A-Rod is a King Asshole? I bet he is.

    Actually, Bonds wasn’t an asshole until the witch hunt started. I’d probably be an asshole (or more of one — lol) too if every time I came to work a bunch of pestering dicks were crowded around my locker trying to snoop into my life and printing a bunch of shit that was sometimes true and untrue.

    I’m not apologizing for Bonds being an asshole. I’m saying that it really shouldn’t matter if you’re an asshole (Bonds) or a good old boy (Perry). If you cheat, you have no business being in the Hall of Fame. You guys can continue on with your “there’s different kinds of cheating” routine all you want…but you’re wrong. Betting on baseball, against the rules…cheating. Throwing a spitball…against the rules…cheating. Taking steroids after 2003…against the rules…cheating.

    By the way, has anyone at MLB ever produced any medical proof that taking steroids makes you hit the ball better or farther? I’m not talking about pointing to the increase in home runs and saying “there’s your proof”. I’m talking about documented medical proof – from a doctor – who says, “this proves steroids make you hit the baseball better and farther.” I don’t think that’s ever happened.

    What McGwire are you talking about? Mark McGwire? You’ve got the wrong dude. McGwire was long known for being a prick UNTIL he started chasing the HR record. Suddenly, out of nowhere, he became a friendly guy. In his days in Oakland and early days in St. Louis, he was a dick.

    And Andrew asked me to list white guys who are dicks who have been extremely well. You got an hour?

    Dave Kingman, Wade Boggs, Rafael Palmeiro, Roger Clemens, Jeff Bagwell, Steve Sax, Gary Carter…there’s a handful for you to chew on. All of those guys were pricks “privately” who never really got exposed for that publicly.

    Right now, I could probably make you list of O’s from ’06 and ’07 who could be on that list too.

    Huff…for starters.

  • random dude

    Hey Drew,

    I’m wondering where you stand on Sammy Sosa (terrible season w/ the O’s aside). I mean, there’s a guy who’s not white. Has been caught cheating (corked bat). Is right there along side of McGwire and Bonds as an obvious steroid user. And when he was in court pretended he couldn’t understand English. I know that O’s fans hate him, but I think that’s because he made a push for Jay Gibbons title of most underperforming Oriole. I don’t think the rest of the nation has the same feelings for Sosa as O’s fans do. I know they certainly don’t hate him near as much as Bonds and no one has gone after him like they went after Bonds.

    Personally, do I think that race has a minor part to do with it? Probably, but only that it’s in the back of your mind. I don’t think it’s near as big of a deal some people think. If it was, wouldn’t they be going after Sosa in a similar fashion?

    But I almost feel sorry for Bonds. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think athletes should be doing steroids. But I’m really wondering if Bonds did that much until Sosa and McGwire raced for the HR record in 1998. Look at Bond’s numbers that year. He batted over .300, hit 37 bombs, over 120 RBIs, 28 SBs, 120 runs, gold glove. IF (and I know it’s a big if) he wasn’t doing steroids then, he probably said, “fuck this, I should be MVP this year, pump me up like Sosa and McGwire.” Also, If Brian Roberts was on steroids (I still don’t buy it, but I know a lot of people are fearful of the Mitchell report coming out for this reason), I’d be surprised if 90% of players haven’t at least tried it at some point in there career.

  • df1570

    Sosa might be the biggest fraud of them all, actually.

    That act where he stood up there and said, “no speaka englais berry well…” has to go down as one of the best lines ever.

    I actually DO feel sorry for Bonds. Aside from the whole cheating deal, which he absolutely brought on himself, there’s no doubt that he’s been chased after more than any of these other ‘roiders and criticized more than anyone else. I guess it’s because he wound up hitting more HR’s than anyone else, but it’s been a bit overboard if you ask me. In fact, it’s been WAY overboard.

    I just sat here for about 30 minutes and surfed all over the place on a bench of different medical-journal type websites to see if I could find any medical site that offers conclusive evidence that you can hit a baseball farther or harder by using steroids but I haven’t found a site yet that claims they have the proof.

    Wait until this Mitchell report comes out and you see all the names of these “good guys” who have been juicing…if the Ravens keep losing, that list needs to come sooner rather than later so I can talk about that and not another “fire the coach” or “bench the QB” call…lol

    I sure do hope Clemens is on that Mitchell report. What the hell are we going to do then we it’s discovered the greatest pitcher of our generation was juicing all those years?

    One can only hope…

  • dan the man

    What do we do if Ripken is on that report, is the question…

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    i’ll agree that the response to bonds was probably overblown but it had little to do with his race. bonds is that rare individual that had staggering talent but an equally staggering opinion of himself and an evident disdain for fans, teammates, and media alike. why are you incapable of understanding the impact that would have on public opinion regarding him being a cheat?

    stop with the gaylord perry already. all of the players from ty cobb to perry got a pass because of the era in which they played. HELLO, PETE ROSE? he was the first guy stung by our new era of 100 million media outlets and the politically correct moral majority that seems pervasive in the judgment of our heroes today.

    unlike some members of this site i believe rose and bonds should be first ballot hall of famers. their talent far outweighs their sketchy morals and shady dealings behind the scenes.

    maybe we need three hall of fames – one for the players who played clean, one for the cheaters who cheated when nobody cared and one for the cheaters who played when they couldn’t get away with it anymore.

    i’ll say this – ignorance was bliss and i think all of this is one of the many reasons that baseball’s pretty dead to me.

  • Andrew in Rochester

    I will submit that any Yankee/Red Sox that wins the World Series will always be treated like the king of baseball despite any dickishness, because they are “good personalities”, like Wade Boggs riding a horse around the Stadium being celebrated as one of the great moments of baseball history….or Jeffery Maier CHEATING and subsequently being rewarded by all sorts of media. It’s the East Coast Bias, which totally exists just based on those things.

    Jason Giambi is the best arguement – he’s white, he’s a Yankee (though he’s never won very much), he was totally on the ‘roids, he crushes pitches, and he was a gigantic dick-off. But he’s given a free pass. Makes me wonder if it’s the problem of being New York-based as opposed to being white. Hmmm…Wade Boggs, Roger Clemens, Jason Giambi, Gary Carter….hmmm.

    Nah. Drew, you make a good argument, and I’ll side with it. But I won’t say this is 70% about Barry Bonds race. I’ll say it’s 50%.

  • df1570

    Ripken NOT on the report.

    Ain’t happening.

    Rose certainly belongs in the Hall of Fame but you can’t put a cat in there who bet on the games he was managing. I mean, come on, bro. The guy placed wagers on games he managed.

    Ty Cobb was a racist piece of shit, but he didn’t really cheat when he played.

    Gaylord Perry cheated.

    But, as Big Ben proves, people just don’t seem to really care that the Hall of Fame contains a confirmed cheater.

    Wouldn’t surprise me at all if Ortiz is on the “report”. He’s started to break down physically a little bit over the last couple of years and it strikes me his “story” is one that smells like steroids. Same for Piazza. And Garciaparra. And Thome.

    I’m thinking that in the days leading up to the supposed unveiling of “the list” that the Players Association files some kind of injunction to have the report NOT made public until they’ve had the opportunity to see the list and consult with the players and their legal representatives. That will drag the thing out until, oh, I don’t know, right around Super Bowl time. Wouldn’t it be a good time for baseball to throw this thing to the masses?

  • Andrew in Rochester

    It would be waaaaaaaaay worse for the players and baseball if the list comes out right as spring training starts, so fans can have right on their palette for the season, especially if someone like David Ortiz or Carlos Delgado is on it.

  • dan the man

    Drew, how do you know that Griffey is an asshole, anyway? You sure do claim to “know” a lot of things that us non-media dudes don’t know. Interviews? Word of mouth?

    I’m not saying I think Ripken would be on the list, and he’s done nothing for anyone to assume he would be. But Baltimore isn’t even really letting it cross their minds and that’s dangerous. Still, I agree, it’s far more likely to include all the players we already sort of suspect and probably some head-scratchers as well, players who didn’t even make a mark in baseball, like Bigbie or some other scrubs.

    We should be prepared for some of the “good guys” to go down though. Roberts, in particular.

  • df1570

    First off, the players don’t care at all how the report tarnishes the game. They don’t care if it comes out right at the beginning of spring training or on New Year’s Eve. If the players cared about their standing in the community and what people thought about them, they’d stay in their respective cities in the off-season and try to drum up some fan support so they wouldn’t have to play in front of 7,000 a night in places like, uh, Baltimore.

    But MLB certainly cares, which gives your position support, Andrew. They’d much rather have it come out now, when no one is thinking baseball, right?

    But what would you and I want if we were running the Player’s Association?

    We would want to be able to string this thing out as long as we could so that we could do what? – negotiate.

    I say release one name a day for 100 days. ha ha

  • Big Ben's Motorcycle

    off the subject but deadspin linked to a flash game (perhaps in my honor) with big ben on a motorcycle! amazing.

    http://www.doubtaboutit.com/2007/11/watch-out-for-that-rotating-chrysler.html

  • neal s

    I could be wrong, but this has to be one of the better Bonds conversations taking place on the Internet these days. Thanks, guys.

    I say that even knowing the risk of Wayward O accusing me of too much high-fiving.

    I kid, of course. But if you’re reading, O, I hope you’re not going to let that little mess a few posts ago keep you away.