Barry Bonds is a polarizing figure. He's also, by all accounts, a titanic jerk. At least, that's the way he's portrayed in the press. I don't know, because I've never met him. I do know that you can't take the full account of a person from what you read or hear. People have written exhaustive books about it, though. So you can decide for yourself.
One certainty is that Jon Heyman, in his most self-righteous and sanctimonious tone, will defend the magic and truth of baseball to his dying breath. Thank God for that.
Hank Aaron is the smart one in baseball's sad spectacle. He isn't coming to Barry Bonds' unhappy party, and he isn't really saying why.
Perfect.Jon, why is that perfect?
Aaron has told people I know that he has no interest in honoring Bonds. But by now that should be obvious. And no one should blame him for that. Many of us feel that way, too, and Bonds -- who's now only nine home runs shy of Aaron's record 755 -- hasn't stolen one thing from us.
I sense some anger here, Jon. And, who said anything about stealing? Are you taking this personally? Was Barry Bonds rude to you at some point? If BB passes Hammerin' Hank, will you hold onto the old home run record because it has more truthiness? More superbosity?
Besides, why should Aaron want to participate in a sad spectacle that's getting sadder by the day? The latest bit of negativity came via Bonds, who is now saying he won't hand over his record-breaking artifacts to Cooperstown because he cares only about himself.
I fell compelled to point out here that the latest bit of negativity comes via J. Heyman, writer at Sports Illustrated. It could be that Bonds won't hand over any of his artifacts to Cooperstown because Bud Selig is a douchebag, or because he's a nutcase who (some speculate) was driven to start using steroids because he was jealous of all the attention other steroid users were getting (I'm looking at you Sosa and McGwire), or because the Baseball HOF is full of crackers and segregationists and similar. Or not. Hard to say, since he won't talk to you. But you can write mean things about him, protect the game, as it were.
That's fine, because about the only person truly excited about this record is him.
There may be more than one person excited about it. I'm guessing. Bruce Bochy is pumped. He needs the Giants to win. And he sucks at managing (separate issue, I know).
Aaron is right for doing what he is doing, which is nothing. Nothing is what Bonds' record deserves.
I didn't know that, but I'm glad you told me. Otherwise I might have thought damn, that guy seems like a jerk, but he's really really good at baseball. Who cares if he took steroids? I guess the same people that think Hank Aaron never took greenies, and that Babe Ruth was godlike, even though he didn't have to play against black or brown people. That's a big advantage, because they are pretty good at sports, these non-whites. You can look it up.
Middle America hates Barry because he's not white, and he doesn't give a shit about you or anything but being really good at baseball. And because you write articles about what a jerk he is, and how his record is meaningless.
Feel free to get off your high-horse and join the rest of the rank and file any time you like, Jon. We'll be over here, enjoying our beers while we watch Barrold Bonds hit another unhittable pitch over the bleachers. Then we'll get back to our lives. We're funny that way.
* title stolen from withleather.com. It's the truest thing I've ever read about sportswriters. and writers in general.