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March 7, 2006 12:18 PM   Subscribe

Sports Illustrated has an excerpt from the upcoming book Game of Shadows. The book claims to have detailed evidence of heavy drug use by Barry Bonds. Tom Verducci of SI (who has a Hall of Fame vote) has suggested this will keep him out of the Hall and is damning as the Dowd Report, which lead to a lifetime ban for Pete Rose. Would this provide any kind of closure to the steroid era? If Bonds does not sue, is that as good as an admission? And although his motives can be considered dubious, did Jose Canseco end up becoming a savior of baseball?
posted by dig_duggler (78 comments total)

 
Good riddance!

White, black, whatever, he is still a prick, so I can take some pleasure in seeing him go down.

I doubt MLB will do anything official regarding this, but hopefully the HOF voters will not forget.

Canseco, while no angel, certainly has brought some much needed attention to the issue.

I will be happy if Bonds suffers another mysterious 'injury' that keeps him out for the rest of the season and leads him into a quiet retirement.
posted by eas98 at 12:26 PM on March 7, 2006


I've never been a baseball fan, but I love Barry Bonds. He's just such a dick to everyone and is completely hated. What's not to like about that?
posted by b_thinky at 12:30 PM on March 7, 2006


FYI, Keith Olberman also concurred with Verducci's assessment on the radio today. On a side note, Bart Giamatti is the one who handed down the ban on Rose. Bart Giamatti is recently oscar nominated actor Paul Giamatti's grandfather.
posted by dig_duggler at 12:31 PM on March 7, 2006


Professional athletes taking banned substances? That's pretty shocking.
posted by 327.ca at 12:34 PM on March 7, 2006


I'm no Bonds fan but, for me, he remains innocent till proven guilty. Dave Zirin has offered another perspective on the man.
posted by mickeyz at 12:37 PM on March 7, 2006


Bart Giamatti was Paul's father.
posted by gubo at 12:38 PM on March 7, 2006


Jose Canseco will never be a savior of anything, especially not baseball.

This is a man who can barely walk, and yet he's going around telling every young athlete who will listen that steroids were the best thing he ever did, simply to make a few bucks and to feel better about his own idiotic life choices.

I can't possibly stress this enough: Fuck. Jose. Canseco.
posted by Simon! at 12:41 PM on March 7, 2006


If I had it my way, none of those guys would get in the HOF - Sosa, Bonds, Maguire, Palmeiro, Canseco.

Ron Santo deserves it way more than those douchebags.
posted by billysumday at 12:42 PM on March 7, 2006


To clarify, my point is that Barry Bonds is very possibly the second greatest baseball player who ever lived. Revealing that he's been roided to the gills isn't exactly going to clean up the game. Every high school baseball player in the nation is going to become a walking pin-cushion by the end of the year.

Instead of focusing on the fact that nine times out of ten steroids turn baseball players into injury-prone one-dimensional messes, and that in fact they probably turned Canseco from the best player in the game into a below average designated hitter, we get another shock story that quietly glamorizes the issue.
posted by Simon! at 12:44 PM on March 7, 2006


To clarify, my point is that Barry Bonds is very possibly the second greatest baseball player who ever lived.

Two points:

1. No, and

2. How can his greatness ever be truly measured given the confounding effects of steroid use?
posted by docgonzo at 12:49 PM on March 7, 2006


Yea, I prefer my baseball greats to play with hangover, like Ruth.
posted by R. Mutt at 12:54 PM on March 7, 2006


Simon! is saying that this is only going to make more kids do steroids. Basically, don't tell anyone he did steroids, because it will make people do steroids. Faulty logic. Rather, crucify the bastard and show the world what a creep he is. Punish him by not letting him get into the HOF a la Pete Rose. That will be more prohibitive than not publishing this article.
posted by billysumday at 12:54 PM on March 7, 2006


Yea, I prefer my baseball greats to play with hangover, like Ruth.

Steak, booze and whorse... the Original Steriods!
posted by BobFrapples at 12:54 PM on March 7, 2006


Jesus... WHORES
posted by BobFrapples at 12:54 PM on March 7, 2006


Somewhere I saw a photoseries of BBonds, one for each year and for 10 years he was thin as a rail AND hit less than 30 homers. Then suddenly he blows up into the hulk and can hit 70. Yea, thats REALLY natural. He's not going into the recordbook above Babe Ruth without a fight. And I don't just mean in the homers category - he's already usurped the babe's #1 position in slugging percentage, another important statistic.
posted by uni verse at 12:55 PM on March 7, 2006


I thought that he might actually be innocent for a while there, but when this photo was recently published showing the rapid, and uncharacteristic hair growth, a common side effect of steroid use, his guilt was solidified.
posted by Shfishp at 12:59 PM on March 7, 2006


Dude, whatever.
posted by deadfather at 12:59 PM on March 7, 2006


Not much of a sports fan, but I do recall seeing a baseball game on the TV at a bar, and the camera zoomed in on the dugout and gave a nice closeup of Bonds' neck and back covered with pimples and boils. I could only imagine what the sportscaster was saying.
posted by StickyCarpet at 1:00 PM on March 7, 2006


That's really putting words into my mouth, BillySumday.

I don't want to hide the fact that he's doing steroids. I want scientific details. I want to know when he started, what he took, how he feels. I want a big ol' chart that shows that the 27 year old, svelte, three time MVP Bonds was clean as a whistle. I want to know that the 40 year old Bonds is in constant pain, that he's impotent, that he'll be dead before he's 50. I want to see an exact list of what other baseball players are taking what he's taking, and I want to see that 99% of them are bouncing between hitting .200 in AA and spending time on the DL because their muscles keep slipping off their bones.

But we won't get that. We'll get "The game is in peril! These roid-enhanced supermen are destroying our beloved records, and nothing can possibly stop them! Clean players don't have a chance against their chemical superpowers!"
posted by Simon! at 1:08 PM on March 7, 2006


Simon!, you're implying that what you ask for is possible. It ain't.

Bonds called for the re-starting of cycles when he felt his energy and power start to drop. If Anderson told Bonds he was not due for another cycle, the authors write, Bonds would tell him, "F--- off, I'll do it myself.'

The steroids=danger argument isn't nearly as strong as the steroids=pathetic argument.
posted by deadfather at 1:15 PM on March 7, 2006


Regardless of the amount Bonds used steroids, its hard to escape a couple of pretty significant points.

First, even without the juice, Bonds was VERY likely a HOF player. He came back last year for the last month of the season (presumably clean) and hit a home run in every 10 ABs. (would check data but office content filter stops mlb.com)

Second, Bonds stormy relationship with the media is the prime contributor of all the hate that the man seems to attract. I see people all the time talk about what a douchebag he is, but I doubt they have ever hung with the man. And no, I don't care that he didn't give you a fucking autograph after you stood outside PacBell for 4 hours. The man signs plenty of autographs, plays hard and when injured, does his job, doesn't beat his wife, and deserves a little space sometimes.

I'm not really a Bonds fan, but honestly, do I really care if he thinks most sports writers are know nothing dickheads? They probably are.
posted by sfts2 at 1:20 PM on March 7, 2006


And to the other questions, it doesn't answer the 'steroid question' because kids are still doing it to try and win the position player lottery, which is averaging a million per. But it would send a message that no one is getting away with it, if bonds doesn't and no one will have any credibility if they are caught, which is an important precedent we need right now. If he doesn't sue, thats not an admission, I think that we had that already when he said he used a clear substance which he didn't happen to know what it was, a laughable story by any standards.
posted by uni verse at 1:20 PM on March 7, 2006


The theory that he's a hall-o-famer anyway can't hold water. You don't know that the steroids didn't help him avoid injuries by supporting his body with super-powered muscle, as one acknowledged steroid user admitted to being the primary reason for using them. You don't know that they masked his decline -- statistics show hitters start declining at age 27-28, not getting better, as bonds did, and fantastically so. He could have been just another Jay Buhner, who was great but couldn't play 20 years because the body just naturally breaks down. There is too many variables over 20 years to say that!
posted by uni verse at 1:25 PM on March 7, 2006


If you cheat on a test, you don't get your score reduced to what you would've gotten if you hadn't cheated.
posted by deadfather at 1:31 PM on March 7, 2006


So if we take steroids out of the picture that means Griffey Jr. is the greatest baseball player of the last 25 years by a very wide margin.
posted by Mick at 1:35 PM on March 7, 2006


First, even without the juice, Bonds was VERY likely a HOF player. He came back last year for the last month of the season (presumably clean) and hit a home run in every 10 ABs. (would check data but office content filter stops mlb.com)

Maybe, but Rose didn't get in for what he did after he played. If this story proves to hold I doubt Bonds would get in due to the stain on his whole career. Technically not against baseball's rules to take steroids at the time, but it was illegal and will damn his stats, all of em.
posted by dig_duggler at 1:36 PM on March 7, 2006


I blame the business of baseball more than I blame Barry Bonds. He's an emblem of an era where performance-enhancing drugs were widely accepted. It was an open secret in 1998 that McGwire and Sosa were juiced on something when they were the heros who saved baseball, and I don't think there's a moral difference between what McGwire was using and what Bonds allegedly used. Bonds' biggest problem is that he's a jerk, so he gets criticized and derided when McGwire was idolized for doing basically the same thing. I don't condone using steroids, but I don't think it's fair or logical to single out someone for doing something that was widely acceptable in the sport. MLB (and the fans for the most part) accepted sterioid use.

I have a hard time attributing Bonds' success to steroids, because I believe more than a few other players were, too. Baseball Almanac has lists of the top 25 National League home run leaders for 1998 (McGwire led with 70; bonds had 37), 1999 (McGwire 65; Bonds 34), 2000 (Sosa 50; Bonds 49), 2001 (Bonds 70; Sosa 64), 2002 (Sosa 49; Bonds 46), 2003 (Thome 47; Bonds 45), and 2004 (Beltre 48; Bonds 45). Five National League players hit 40 or more home runs in 1998, seven in 1999, nine in 2000, seven in 2001, four in 2002, six in 2003, and six in 2004. Bonds was only way ahead of the pack in 2001. Were those other players juiced, too?

I also don't agree with the idea of taking his records away. He set those records by playing the game was it was played in the late 1990s and early 2000s, with players taking steroids.

The San Francisco Chronicle has a an article with more, plus a podcast of an interview with the two writers.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:36 PM on March 7, 2006


Regardless of what the haters say, Barry Bonds is one of the greatest players of all time. Best ever? You could make that case.

Lots of guys are on roids and not doing what Barry is. People have always been looking for a reason to hate this guy.
posted by b_thinky at 1:39 PM on March 7, 2006


I'm no Bonds fan but, for me, he remains innocent till proven guilty. Agreed, but it seems like this book might do the trick. One of the more fascinating aspects of this to me is:

What if he doesn't sue the authors for everything they're worth? Isn't that an admission? Why would someone as outspoken as Bonds allow this kind of libel?
posted by dig_duggler at 1:40 PM on March 7, 2006


Best ever? You could make that case.

Better than Aaron? As much crap as Bonds thinks he gets, I don't think he's getting death threats because he's black. And for now, that Aaron guy still has a couple seasons worth more of home runs.
posted by dig_duggler at 1:45 PM on March 7, 2006


I also don't agree with the idea of taking his records away. He set those records by playing the game was it was played in the late 1990s and early 2000s..
Even if his records make Babe Ruth dip in the standings? Presumably you would tell Babe's relatives, well, the babe did play in an era when the unspringy balls could barely be hit over the fence, the pitchers were better, there were no steroids, and babe hit more homers than anyone on his team combined, and was first in slugging percentage, until Bonds, but well, bonds played well in the 1990's, with shorter distances to fences, a springy ball, lousy pitchers due to expansion, and oh what in the hell was I saying he's not as GOOD!
posted by uni verse at 1:51 PM on March 7, 2006


According to the article, Bonds started using in 1998. Check to see how many HR he had by the end of the 1997 season - 374 or just about 30/season. In the previous 5 years (92-97) he averaged just under 40 a season. If he had averaged just 20 a season from then until now, he would have had well over over 500 HRs in his career. Yeah, I'm pretty sure he'd have been in the HOF, but what the heck its all conjecture, and I'd take it to SpoFI if I want to argue with stat geeks...
posted by sfts2 at 1:53 PM on March 7, 2006


Regardless of what the haters say, Barry Bonds is one of the greatest players of all time.

Haters? Ha Ha... how about, people who don't like friggin' cheaters?

In a sport like Track & Field, where there aren't millions of dollars riding on attendance numbers and jersey sales, if you use steroids your ass gets BANNINATED, and everything you ever did on steriods is DISAPPEARED.

Remember Ben Johnson? You could call him one of the greatest sprinters of all time, but there's nothing in the record books to support that... because he CHEATED.

Major League Baseball is too chickenshit to handle their own business regarding steriods, because they know that everybody's favorite baseball "heroes" will get shithammered.

I don't have any respect for players who take shortcuts and try to do it the easy way.
posted by BobFrapples at 2:01 PM on March 7, 2006


dig_duggler

Love the name...

With all due respect, if you think that Bonds won't get into the Hall because of steriods, you are on even better drugs. He'll MAYBE not get in on first ballot...I think perhaps you do not fully appreciate the magnitude of what this guy has done over a 20 year career, and I think maybe over estimating the effect that PED's have on all of the aspects of the game.
posted by sfts2 at 2:01 PM on March 7, 2006


Best player ever? One of the Best? I've never gotten that impression, myself. A good player? Sure. But the best? I wouldn't rank many of the top sluggers in the last few years as among the greatest that have ever played. Heck, I wouldn't even consider the Babe the best, either.

A recent player who ranks high with me is Tony Gwynn. He first scores major points with me for remaining with one team his entire career. How many other players can claim that? Then, his hitting ability was absolutely amazing. In 1994, with less than a month left in the season, Gwynn was batting .394. Then the strike occurred and destroyed his chance to officially have one of the highest batting averages in nearly sixty years. At nearly 9,300 at bats, he only struck out 434 times. Insane. Check out more of his accomplishments on his page above.
posted by Atreides at 2:15 PM on March 7, 2006



With all due respect, if you think that Bonds won't get into the Hall because of steriods, you are on even better drugs. He'll MAYBE not get in on first ballot...I think perhaps you do not fully appreciate the magnitude of what this guy has done over a 20 year career, and I think maybe over estimating the effect that PED's have on all of the aspects of the game.


Could be. But, concensus (based purely on interviews I've heard with HOF voters) currently seems to be that McGwire won't get in based on his performance during the hearings. Right now, you're totally right, he's in. But if this story keeps building, if this evidence is that damning, and he ends up not commenting his way through the season and gets hurt it's quite possible he won't. Some sports writers who've read a little more of the book have been suggesting it is that damning, and the Commish might invoke the best interest of baseball clause to get him out of the game this season. Could be all hype etc.. But I bet it gets really interesting.
posted by dig_duggler at 2:15 PM on March 7, 2006


If Bonds gets in to the HoF (he shouldn't), Pete Rose should have his own building erected, and then he should be blown by all the people who sanctimoniously said he had hurt "the game."

Meh. I'm still bitter that Peter Angelos owns the Orioles--I haven't watch a baseball game all the way through in over a decade. I'm happy to watch it die out and be replaced with better sports like football, basketball, and NASCAR.
posted by bardic at 2:18 PM on March 7, 2006


So if we take steroids out of the picture that means Griffey Jr. is the greatest baseball player of the last 25 years by a very wide margin.

There is absolutely no way Ken Griffey was never a steroid abuser. No way. His career is just the absolute textbook example.

But he's a nice guy, good looking, his Nike ads were pretty funny, so we assume he's clean.
posted by Simon! at 2:20 PM on March 7, 2006


There is absolutely no way Ken Griffey was never a steroid abuser.
huh?
His career is just the absolute textbook example.

He never ballooned up like others, he always looked thin. He was pretty steady also, till he went to Cincinatti then I will give you the collapse that is wierd, but the other stuff isn't 'trademark'.
posted by uni verse at 2:26 PM on March 7, 2006


Best player ever? One of the Best? I've never gotten that impression, myself. A good player? Sure. But the best? I wouldn't rank many of the top sluggers in the last few years as among the greatest that have ever played. Heck, I wouldn't even consider the Babe the best, either.

A recent player who ranks high with me is Tony Gwynn. He first scores major points with me for remaining with one team his entire career. How many other players can claim that? Then, his hitting ability was absolutely amazing. In 1994, with less than a month left in the season, Gwynn was batting .394. Then the strike occurred and destroyed his chance to officially have one of the highest batting averages in nearly sixty years. At nearly 9,300 at bats, he only struck out 434 times. Insane. Check out more of his accomplishments on his page above.
posted by Atreides


If you believe bonds used steroids and want to ignore the statistics, that's one thing. But if you simply want to compare stats Gwynn couldn't carry Barry's jockstrap. I mean, this isn't even close. They're not on the same planet. Tell Gwynn he was as good as Barry and even he'll have a good laugh.
posted by justgary at 2:45 PM on March 7, 2006


Just as an aside, since the poster mentioned it: Does anyone actually believe Pete Rose's "lifetime ban" will be upheld?
posted by cribcage at 2:54 PM on March 7, 2006


They're not on the same planet.
But there lies the rub, see, we'll never know, since people started cheating. That's part of what makes people furious. Comparing players is half the fun of the game. And now coaches don't know if a player will fall apart in three days (like a badly constructed time-space).
posted by uni verse at 2:55 PM on March 7, 2006


Gwynn couldn't carry Barry's jockstrap

Did you even look at Gwynn's statistics? Bonds had nearly as many at bats as Gwynn and had triple the strike outs. Gwynn had 3, 141 hits versus Bonds 2,742. They had comparable doubles, but Gwynn has more triples. Tony Gwynn's career batting average is .338 as opposed to Bonds' .300.
posted by Atreides at 3:13 PM on March 7, 2006


(Sorry, Bonds had 73 home runs in 2001, not 70. I regret the error.)

Everyone hit more home runs in 2001, though. The top 25 National League home run leaders averaged 36.12 home runs in 1998, 38 in 1999, 36.84 in 2000, 40.04 in 2001, 33.04 in 2002, 34.16 in 2003, and 35.64 in 2004.

Presumably you would tell Babe's relatives, well, the babe did play in an era when the unspringy balls could barely be hit over the fence, the pitchers were better, there were no steroids, and babe hit more homers than anyone on his team combined

I'd say that Babe Ruth hit more than entire teams combined, partially because of the live ball era and smaller ballparks.
posted by kirkaracha at 3:18 PM on March 7, 2006


While I know he's a smug jackass...

Steroids do not improve your hand-eye coord. They do not sharpen your vision nor your reaction time.

This is a non-event. The ballparks are smaller, the pitching is horrible and they use what is basically now a leather-covered superball. All done because Americans (the ones who all hate soccer) like to see "scoring"- especially home runs.

To me, steriods are just another "enhancement".

They also elect almost everyone to the Hall of Fame nowadays, because that institution has become an enterprise. So he'll get in.
posted by wfc123 at 3:33 PM on March 7, 2006


They also elect almost everyone to the Hall of Fame nowadays, because that institution has become an enterprise. So he'll get in.

Not Buck O'Neil!

Sorry, still bitter.
posted by dig_duggler at 3:47 PM on March 7, 2006


Steroids do not improve your hand-eye coord. They do not sharpen your vision nor your reaction time.

according to the article:

"Not only did the growth hormone keep him fresh, but after complaining in 1999 about difficulty tracking pitches, he noticed it improved his eyesight as well."
posted by lord_wolf at 4:03 PM on March 7, 2006


Steroids do not improve your hand-eye coord. They do not sharpen your vision nor your reaction time.

That's precisely the point of steroids. You don't need to hit it on the sweet spot; you just brute force it out of the park. We understand you can't just juice some jerk off the street and turn him into Barry Bonds. But it allows a talented hitter to get away with much more than he'd otherwise get.
posted by deadfather at 4:12 PM on March 7, 2006


Presumably you would tell Babe's relatives, well, the babe did play in an era when the unspringy balls could barely be hit over the fence, the pitchers were better, there were no steroids, and babe hit more homers than anyone on his team combined


unspringy balls? nope
better pitchers? highly debatable
no performance enhancing drugs? how do you know?

You know what else, Babe Ruth didn't have to play against best baseball players in the world. Today's players do.
posted by ozomatli at 4:21 PM on March 7, 2006


Me:Gwynn couldn't carry Barry's jockstrap

Did you even look at Gwynn's statistics? Bonds had nearly as many at bats as Gwynn and had triple the strike outs. Gwynn had 3, 141 hits versus Bonds 2,742. They had comparable doubles, but Gwynn has more triples. Tony Gwynn's career batting average is .338 as opposed to Bonds' .300.
posted by Atreides


I'm familiar with both players, and it's not close statistically. Batting average is an overrated hitting stat. Triples? He was hitting home runs. Check out on base percentage. Check out slugging percentage. Bonds was considered one of the best all round players ever even before he got close to the home run record. He is the only player in history to have hit at least 500 home runs and 500 stolen bases. He has a record 7 mvp awards and 8 gold gloves.

Gwynn was very good. I like the guy, loved to watch him play. But they're not in the same ballpark. Bonds is in the top 5 of all time easily (tons of links to back it up) and you could easily put him at number one, and many do.

If you want to exclude bonds because of steroids, fine, but there are others who would tower over gwynn as well.
posted by justgary at 4:21 PM on March 7, 2006


Ron Santo deserves it way more than those douchebags.

Amen. It's a shame that he didn't go into the Hall before Ryno did -- not that Ryne Sandberg didn't deserve it. (Lifetime .989 at 2nd base? Amazing.)

But, geeze, what's a guy got to do? Six straight gold gloves, 9 time all-star, liftime 342 HR and .277, playing on the hot corner? Lead the NL seven times in putouts *and* assists? What's Mike Schmitt got that Santo doesn't?
posted by eriko at 4:21 PM on March 7, 2006


What's Mike Schmitt got that Santo doesn't?

He was on a team that actually won something.
< \met hat>

I still hate Mike Schmidt though, they never should have let that bastard in.

posted by ozomatli at 4:30 PM on March 7, 2006


no performance enhancing drugs? how do you know?

Aw c'mon. List performance enhancing drugs from that era that he could have been taking.
posted by dig_duggler at 4:31 PM on March 7, 2006


Has Bonds ever tested positive for steroids according to MLB rules? Unless he does/has, I'm not sure you can punish him in any official way.

After all, we all know other guys are on steroids as well (and not performing like Barry, I might add). Why punish Bonds simply because he got his drugs from a source under federal investigation?
posted by b_thinky at 4:35 PM on March 7, 2006


But they're not in the same ballpark.

They are, alas, not. 162 game average (over 20 seasons for both.)
Player    BA       OBP      SLG      TB        FP
Bonds     .300     .342     .611     331      .984
Gwynn     .338     .388     .459     283      .987
Sorry. Gwynn's batting average is better, and Bond's OBP is boosted by all the walks, but that BA and OBP doesn't make up for the slugging or total bases, and the fielding percentage doesn't either.

The odd thing about Bonds is the way his slugging percentage just kept climbing over 20 years -- and the big year of 2001, when he jumped from a .688 (carreer high to date) to .863 -- with about the same number of at bats. After that, it was .799, .749 and .812.

Guys who get old don't normally get strong -- except for Bonds, McGwire and Sosa, who *all* had this pattern.

Sosa's first ten years had a .300 to .500 SLG, then in 1999, he jumps from a .480 to .647, then hangs in the six hundres until 2001, when he jumps again to .737. Age and ego then gets to him, but he was still over .500 until he left the Cubs.

Mark McGwire had a standout 2nd year in 1987 (.618 SLG) as part of the Bash Brothers, but was otherwise in the 400s until 1992, where he had a nice .585 -- then spent two years hurt (He officially recorded a .726 in 1992, but played only 27 games.) Then, after two years of barely playing, he comes roaring back with a .685 in 1995, and spend the rest of his career in the high sixes and low sevens until his final season in 2001.

Three guys, with long careers as good power batters with flaws, except for McGwire's standout 2nd year (unmatched for nearly a decade) who suddenly become great power hitters -- and stay that way until the very end of their careers. Hmm.

posted by eriko at 4:42 PM on March 7, 2006


I actually have a question about the original post. Why didn't these guys (who are investigative reporters for the San Fran Chronicle I believe) turn this evidence into the paper for a story? I mean, they had this evidence two years ago and they did not go to the paper with it? That does not make any sense to me. Or maybe the paper, at the time, did not think it was anything new to offer to the ongoing saga with Bonds. I guess by then (2003) most people had already decided in their own minds what they believed. I digress though, to me it just does not make sense to write a book for two years rather then just publishing a newspaper article on it at the time. Maybe there was too much information for the paper? Who knows.
posted by grobey22 at 4:49 PM on March 7, 2006


no performance enhancing drugs? how do you know?

Aw c'mon. List performance enhancing drugs from that era that he could have been taking.
posted by dig_duggler at 6:31 PM CST on March 7 [!]


Amphetamines, nicotine, alcohol, who knows?

Do you also think Willie Mays and Hank Aaron were clean too?
posted by ozomatli at 5:09 PM on March 7, 2006


Also why does everyone keep giving pitchers the free pass? Roger Clemens I am looking at you! You too Randy Johnson!
posted by ozomatli at 5:11 PM on March 7, 2006


Do you also think Willie Mays and Hank Aaron were clean too?

You have got to be sh*@*ing me
posted by dig_duggler at 5:18 PM on March 7, 2006


Do you also think Willie Mays and Hank Aaron were clean too?

Don't forget Lou Gehrig and Yogi Berra, dude. I heard those guys ate pure horse hormone.
posted by billysumday at 5:20 PM on March 7, 2006


After all, we all know other guys are on steroids as well (and not performing like Barry, I might add). Why punish Bonds simply because he got his drugs from a source under federal investigation?

Actually we don't know for sure (unless you tested postiive like Raffy). It makes it rather difficult. If this book is as well sourced as it claims to be, then we know Bonds did.
posted by dig_duggler at 5:21 PM on March 7, 2006



I actually have a question about the original post. Why didn't these guys (who are investigative reporters for the San Fran Chronicle I believe) turn this evidence into the paper for a story? I mean, they had this evidence two years ago and they did not go to the paper with it? That does not make any sense to me. Or maybe the paper, at the time, did not think it was anything new to offer to the ongoing saga with Bonds. I guess by then (2003) most people had already decided in their own minds what they believed. I digress though, to me it just does not make sense to write a book for two years rather then just publishing a newspaper article on it at the time. Maybe there was too much information for the paper? Who knows.



Good question. I'm not quite sure, but from what I have read
a). some of the things had just become unclassified
b). Iron is hot! He's going after Babe. Time to sell some books!

But seriously, these seem to be well respected sportwriters. I think they'll get quizzed on this as they make the rounds. This might be the real deal. Hello Van Doren.
posted by dig_duggler at 5:25 PM on March 7, 2006


Do you also think Willie Mays and Hank Aaron were clean too?

You have got to be sh*@*ing me
posted by dig_duggler at 7:18 PM CST on March 7 [!]


educate yourself: google "red juice" or "greenies".
posted by ozomatli at 5:31 PM on March 7, 2006


Do you also think Willie Mays and Hank Aaron were clean too?
Now thats a troll if there ever was one.
*mob approaches with torches*
posted by uni verse at 5:32 PM on March 7, 2006


Just to be clear: I have no love for Bonds and I loves me some baseball, but lets face it: cheating and baseball go hand in hand. In fact that's what I love about baseball, the many creative ways of cheating: spitball, scuffing, corked bats, patches on the gloves and on and on.

Baseball: If you ain't cheatin' you ain't winnin'!
posted by ozomatli at 5:44 PM on March 7, 2006


educate yourself: google "red juice" or "greenies".

You're right. He was totally on the dog treats. (I mean, you really should try it yourself before you suggest it)

Yeah, I know I'm being smug and I should resist the trollness. But 'educate yourself' seemed a bit too smug.
posted by dig_duggler at 5:53 PM on March 7, 2006


ozomatli, Ok there seems to be alot of rumors on the 'internets' about the red juice, I am saddened to hear. I hope its not true about those great players. But I am still not convinced this makes it ok for Bonds.
posted by uni verse at 5:58 PM on March 7, 2006


ozomatli, Ok there seems to be alot of rumors on the 'internets' about the red juice, I am saddened to hear. I hope its not true about those great players. But I am still not convinced this makes it ok for Bonds.
posted by uni verse at 7:58 PM CST on March 7 [!]


I doesn't make it right of course, but it does put things into perspective.

btw, the "educate yourself" was funny to me when i said it outloud in my best chappelle voice, but looking at it on the screen it seems a bit harsh. Mea culpa.
posted by ozomatli at 6:05 PM on March 7, 2006


*in Shaft movie backup singer voice*
Well-thats allright! (If you're just talkin' like chappelle)
posted by uni verse at 6:14 PM on March 7, 2006


Barry Bonds is vital baseball. He helps the fans feel righteous.

Bitching about the lack of purity in professional sports or even the Olympics is like paying to sleep with a woman and then being upset to find out that she bought her breasts.

It's unreal because that is what you want.
posted by srboisvert at 6:37 AM on March 8, 2006


It's unreal because that is what you want. I enjoyed baseball just fine before 70 homers per year, most people enjoy close games, base stealing, pickles, suicide squeezes more than a juiced up homer. What was your reaction to the last homer you saw? "I wonder if he's juiced or not..." But the things that are done without fakery, with genuine effort, like Jackie Chan movie, are made the more enjoyable.
posted by uni verse at 8:51 AM on March 8, 2006


Today's article in the San Francisco Chronicle has charts of Bond's top six seasons for home runs, post-1998 power surge, five best seasons, historical rankings, old-vs.-young stats, and home runs after age 35.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:46 AM on March 8, 2006


Uh, 'old bonds' stats goes up to 1998? The SF chronicle is skewing the years and thereby results to make him look clean. You know the saying about statistics....
posted by uni verse at 2:34 PM on March 8, 2006


He allegedly started using steroids after the 1998 baseball season. "Pre-" and "post-steroids" would have been clearer than "old vs. new." Bonds' career stats.

1998: 156 games, .303 BA, 37 home runs, one every 14.9 at-bats.

1998-1999 off-season: Bonds allegedly starts using Winstrol.

1999: 102 games, .262 BA, 34 home runs, one every 10.4 at-bats.

1999-2000 off-season: Bonds allegedly starts using Deca Durabolin and human growth hormone.

2000: The Giants start playing home games at Pac Bell Park, which is specificially designed for Bonds to hit home runs.

2000: 143 games, .306 BA, 49 home runs, one every 9.8 at-bats.

2000-2001 off-season: Bonds allegedly starts taking BALCO-created drugs "cream" and "clear," as well as Clomid, a women's infertility drug, and Modafinil, a narcolepsy drug used as a stimulant.

2001: 153 games, .328 BA, 73 home runs, one every 6.5 at-bats.

2002: Bonds allegedly goes on intensive three-week steroid cycles using elaborate drug cocktails.

2002: 143 games, .370 BA, 46 home runs, one every 8.8 at-bats.

2003: 130 games, .341 BA, 45 home runs, one every 8.7 at-bats.

2004: 147 games, .362 BA, 45 home runs, one every 8.3 at-bats.

He played in 144 games in 1995, 158 games in 1996, and 159 games in 1997, so taking steroids didn't increase his playing time. Before 1998 he hit .301 or better four times, and .262 or better four times (plus .261 one season).

His at-bats per home run dropped during the steroid years, but it wasn't the first time he'd done that. If you look at his at-bats per home run, he hit home runs more often during 1992-1998 than he had during 1986-1991. He got better in that one way as he got older, without using steroids.

So Bonds cheated? Spare me the criticisms:
Give me a break. Finding out that Bonds may have taken banned substances--even if you want to buy into his excuse that he didn't know he was doing anything wrong--is a surprise on the level of discovering that the sun rises in the east, that two-year-olds like sweets, that fox terriers bark at strangers and that it's a bad idea to tell a woman she's got a fat backside.

You can't even talk about taking away his records or diminishing them. He did what he was allowed to do. No one can get punished for that.
posted by kirkaracha at 3:53 PM on March 8, 2006


Wow, all the Bonds sympathesizers have really suprised me. I am left wondering what your motivations are.. do you believe players are victims of a harsh enviroment - granted I believe that to some extent, especially minorities. I'll even grant I understand cheating under the pressure to perform. But others who have not cheated do they deserve to slide down in the record book in the process? Specifically the records from > 75 years ago.
posted by uni verse at 10:36 AM on March 9, 2006


joan ryan, of the sf chronicle, writes about bonds' sympathizers and that "truth" is meant to be used as a defense.
posted by kendrak at 10:47 AM on March 9, 2006


Asked and answered, and the article is quite far-reaching, isn't it? Thanks kendrak!
posted by uni verse at 11:19 AM on March 9, 2006


Okay, he's suing but not for libel. Guiiiiiilty.
posted by dig_duggler at 9:59 AM on March 24, 2006


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