Barry Bonds - collusion or just not worth it?

Friday, April 04, 2008

I know, this is becoming a baseball blog, but no one is complaining, and I don’t have anything else I feel like writing about. Many sportswriters are up in arms over Barry Bonds not being on anyone’s roster. Many people argue that he had a very productive offensive season last year, and would surely help someone this year, especially an AL team in need of a designated hitter. Many go on to accuse baseball of colluding to not sign Bonds. Oh, they say. It’s not possible that no one could overlook the off-field problems and sign him. I think this is absurd. If you only evaluate the cost/benefit of Bonds' bat in your lineup, then certainly he is valuable to many teams. This would suggest that teams are colluding, although it certainly wouldn’t prove it. But what about the rest of it? What if he goes to jail? How will the fans react? I would rather the Orioles not win another game this year than sign Bonds. You can’t measure his impact on the team by only looking at his bat. And most of the other things he brings to the table are really, really bad. He does seem to boost attendance, which saddens me. I’ve never seen him play, and I’m glad. I realize that my opinions here are influenced by the fact that I hate Barry Bonds and the impact he’s had on baseball. I know he takes probably more than his fair share of the heat for the steroid problem, but he’s brought a lot of it on himself with his attitude. I don’t want him to set foot on a baseball field ever again. I don’t want to read articles about him. I don’t want him in the Hall of Fame. If it does turn out that the owners are colluding to keep him out of the game, fine. Punish them appropriately. But to ignore the mountains of negative baggage he brings with him when imagining why a team might not sign him is irresponsible.

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