Friday, July 13, 2007

Why I'd Cheer for Barry!

This summer we will all bear witness to the falling of Henry Aaron as the all time home run champion in Major League Baseball. Barry Lamar Bonds will hit number 756 and become the first player since Babe Ruth to unify both the single season and all-time home run records, whether you like it or not, whether you disagree with how he did it or not, whether you BOO him or not. He is a product of his environment, and that isn't to say it's an excuse for cheating, or justification for what he's done, it's merely to state the facts of the times. This won't be an arguement for his hall of fame induction, nor will it be to justify that he was a phenominal player before he was accused of using performance enhancing substances, this is simply put, why as a fan of major league baseball, I will cheer for Barry Bonds when he hits 756.

After the cancellation of the 1994 World Series of Baseball due to a strike by the Major League Players and it's union, popularity of the sport was at an all-time low, even the considerable dynasty of a very good New York Yankees team throughout the mid-90's, mlb's key franchise, couldn't save Major League Baseball's ratings. Beginning in the summer of 1998 two sluggers, Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa captivated America as they chased down one of the most hallowed numbers in all of baseball, 61. Not only did they bring America's Past Time back into the for front of American Sports, but they excited a country in the effortless assault on that record. Behind all that, it was Packing in stadiums, taking magazine covers, dominating headlines, and bringing in major advertising dollars from corporate sponsors.
It is clear to me now, that not only did the owners, general managers, and managers of these ball clubs recognize the unbelievable change in power hitting in the game, but they ignored any suspicion or scent of that. So when these above average athletes zoomed into the panthenon of great power hitters, we all buried our heads in the sand and reaped the benefits of this jolt into the game. Then came the only athlete to ever belt 500 home runs and steal 500+ bases in the history of Major League Baseball, may have or may have not decided to use performance enhancing substances, low and behold the home run record goes from 70 to 73, and Bonds becomes the best power hitter of his generation. WE CONTINUE to ignore all this because of the awe we are all in. I'm amazed now at all the radio heads and writers who seem so strong about having opinions on whether or not he should be condemed for what he may have or may have not done. The reality is, it is way to easy to be a monday morning quarterback on this one, some of us may even just feel "miffed" at what we thought was real, we have an excuse to boo, but owners, gm's and commisioners named Bud, really have nothing to be upset about, nor should they be making stands now, that goes for players too, my mother always said, your just as guilty as the guy doing the crime if you don't try and stop him.
In some people's eyes he is actually becoming more popular because of everything surrounding him. I actually find it disgusting that these ball players were brought before the U.S. Congress to discuss what may have taken place, specifically because of the poverty, crime, and generally horrible sh*t going on in this country, we actually dedicated congressional resources to determine whether or not people who play a f'n game are cheating? It is so rediculous and absolutely absurd that it took place in my mind. Guilty or Not Guilty, rather than having those men maintain a salary for that day, they should go spend that time the poorest sections of the country and use their resources to build up those communities. Instead like most things in this world, our priorities are so screwed up we generally make things worse.
Barry Bonds has done so much charity work for the San Francisco area, he is beloved in that specific part of the country for what he has done, those two geeks who wrote a book about information THEY SHOULDN'T EVEN have been privey to oughta dump all those proceeds to charities that Bonds helps out, those are the real scumbags in this whole thing, what have they done that is so grand? what have they given back to the neighborhoods they grew up in? oh yea, thats right, they wrote a book to make a dollar, please.
If Barry Bonds took steroids, which he very well may have, he's never tested positive in any steroid testing, and we should recognize, good or bad the accomplishment he is about to achieve. I don't care about what is right or wrong in a game, I have larger problems in life to deal with, I realize that, I just wish that those men who sat around with their heads up their rear end because of the money he was lining their pockets with, will come out and congradulate him for what he's done. I'd give him a standing ovation for doing something that only one other man has done in over 60 years (unify) the home run record. If it comes out he abused steroids yes it will be tainted, and yes it will not be nearly the feat that Henry Aaron once achieved, but I cannot make character judgements based on what a book, or newspaper, or radio show gives me, I need to experience what type of person this guy is, first hand to do that. I haven't so all I have to go on is what I've seen, with my own eyes, and that is 73 home runs in one year, and constantly being walked because of two things, the fear of what he'd do with that piece of lumber, and the fact the giants haven't had a number 5 hitter for him EVER, oh yea and I will see him hit 756 and break that record.

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