Wednesday, August 8, 2007

756*; The Saga of Bonds and the Record Being Broken...

Barry Bonds, as we all know, hit his 756th home run yesterday, thus becoming the all-time Major League Baseball home run king.

I actually stayed up last night and watched the game on MASN, even though I am trying to wart off an illness and honestly should have been sleeping.

Well, considering such an important record was broken, the response to it seemed kind of -- muted.

It was like everyone was there for the car crash, and that’s it.

Instead of adulation and love of a man who broke the record, it’s almost as if America is in mourning.

In reality, there was so much controversy and hatred of Bonds that seemed much like a lonely quest for him, and that America reacted fairly swift to an alleged cheat and villain taking down the record of an icon, and one who battled real hurdles.

Now, Washington Nationals’ pitcher Mike Bacsik will become a footnote in history and perhaps on the other end of trivia questions for generations to come. Although Washington won 8-6, the end result of the game is completely irrelevant at this venture.

The whole pursuit of 756 has been quite sad; alas, we have an athlete who is probably the best all-around player of a generation, part of a family of baseball royalty, yet may or may not be getting the respect he deserves.

However, you reap what you sow and the reaction to the home run chase may are what fans felt towards Bonds, deserved or not.

Forget the drug use, you can only disrespect fans and be ornery for so long until they dislike you.

I have also been further mystified by the response of baseball towards Bonds’ quest, especially by commissioner Bud Selig. For a man who’s done a lot of good in baseball, while having a share of his own foibles, has really dropped the ball in the way he’s handled it.

Selig reacted as if the stench of Bonds was too much for him, and he’d rather have a colonoscopy than have anything to do with the celebration.

Most players seemed to be in support and respect his talent; however, I am sure there are some who feel disgusted, but meanwhile keep their opinions to themselves.

The exception to the rule may be Curt Schilling, and perhaps Dmitri Young

Fans have voiced their opinion, and outside San Francisco, Bonds is a pariah and someone whom they rather see go away, sooner rather than later.

In the end, I feel that Bonds is just a sign of our times – an athlete who did what he could to win and did what did for the money, glory and prove that he was the best.

Politicians lie, kids cheat on tests, married people cheat, actors and actresses spend umpteen amount of money on surgery to stop the aging clock, and in some office today, an employee is embezzling from his or her company.

Bonds today is representative of what many in society are; however, he’s no hero. If he did use performance enhancing drugs (as the evidence overwhelmingly states), he did what he could get ahead, and there was no traffic cop on the highway to stop him.

Bud Selig, the Giants and Major League Baseball in a sick marriage of money, glory, ballpark attendance and ratings, turned a blind eye to the drug use in sports whether they wanted to admit it existed or not.

All of this happened under your watch...

Peter McGowan, who owns the Giants along with GM Brian Sabean might not like the stench that Barry Bonds leaves behind when he walks past, but there’s no doubt that his presence along with his bat made San Francisco contenders for the past fifteen years (until recently), filled the ballpark and made oodles of money.

Well, we as fans, we may or may not like him; nevertheless, we wanted to see the car accident.

Today, the vast majority of us will go online, read articles, go on blogs, message boards and say what we will about Bonds’ 756th home run.

Personally, in the end, sports are a small part of life for most of us; however, it creates a lot of discussion and helps to build, or in the case of Bonds, break bridges

Folks, let’s see him as an entertainer who did he could to get ahead in his craft; thusand not for any more than that. I, for one, am glad this home run race is over. It’s been sad to see the whole sags and now for a generation we’ll look back at a man, Barry Bonds, who could have been so much more.

He’s seen nothing more as a villain.

In the lonely pursuit, I have seen a lot of this country and how its values are shaped, through a man whose job it is to just hit a baseball.

I have no idea if it a good thing, or this country is really in trouble; nevertheless, we should perhaps take a moment, look back and see who are role models should be, rather than some person who plays a kid's game.

In a summer of scandals in professional sports, the reality is that the expectations of our heroes, our gladiators need to change, and Barry Bonds served as the case study.

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