Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Barry Lamar Bonds

Son of Bobby Bonds, cousin of Reggie Jackson and his godfather is Willie Mays. How could Barry not succeed? He had the best players in the game to bounce things off of whenever he had questions. Can you imagine having Willie Mays as the person you asked about playing defense or running the bases?

Well, he certainly hasn't let anyone, close to him, down.

Drafted by the San Francisco Giants in the 2nd round of the 1982 amateur draft. Did not sign.
Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates, 1st round (6th pick) of 1986 amateur draft.
On October 26, 1992 granted free agency.
On December 8, 1992 signed by the San Francisco Giants.

Winner of seven (7) Most Valuable Player awards.
Was second in the balloting to Terry Pendleton (Atlanta Braves) in 1991.
Again he was second to Jeff Kent (SF Giants) in 2000.

In 1991 Terry Pendleton's statistics were as follows:
AB-586 R-94 H-187 HR-22 RBI-86 BA-.319...Barry's 1991 numbers:
AB-510 R-95 H-149 HR-25 RBI-116 BA-.292.. Barry had 107 bases on balls vs Pendleton's 43. Pendleton got 274 points vs. Bonds' 259. The writers had a chance for some "payback" with Barry Bonds, because Barry won't kiss their lily white asses, they just couldn't allow such an opportunity to slip away. The fraternity of hacks would've had a most difficult time swallowing their shallow pride had this not taken place. You can bet on it!

In 2000, Jeff Kent doesn't come close to the numbers he achieved if Barry isn't on the same lineup card. Not the other way around. (But he did put up the numbers, so he was more deserving than Terry Pendleton.)

My recollection of the 2002 World Series was that Barry shined and Kent disappeared for a few games. In a 7-game series not being visible in 3 (games 1,4, and 7) of the games- when you're of MVP caliber- is huge.

In 2000, Jeff Kent's numbers were:
AB-587 R-117 H-187 HR-33 RBI-125 BB-90 K-107 BA-.334
Bonds in 2000
AB-480 R-129 H-147 HR-49 RBI-106 BB-117 K-77 BA- .306

World Series numbers:
Kent: AB-29 R-6 H-8 HR-3 RBI-7 BB-1 K-7 BA-.276

(In Game 6, the 16-4 SF win, the one when JT Snow saved Darrin Baker (Dusty's kid) in an unforgettable act of selflessness around the area of home plate, was Kent's coming out party in that Series. He had an incredible game. AB-5, R-4, H-3, RBI-4 and 2 HRs.)

Bonds: AB-17 R-8 H-8 HR-4 RBI-6 BB-13 K-3 BA- .471
JT Snow: AB-27 R- 6 H-11 HR-1 RBI-4 BA- .407

Now here we are in the 2007 season, and although his teammates seem to be at the ends of their collective ropes, Bonds continues to flourish.

He deserved to be voted into the National League starting lineup. His numbers are once again right there at the top.

After 74 games (the number I said it would take him to pass Hammerin' Hank) he has hit 17 HRs (4 short of 755), 42-RBI, 44-R, 60-H in 197-ABs. He's been issued 86 bases on balls, has 5 stolen bags and is batting .305.

Not to shabby for a 42 year old, who turns 43 on July 24th. There are some jealous hacks who mistakenly said, in so many words, that Barry Lamar Bonds is in need of a rocking chair. Wishful thinking on the part of those who think their vantage point is the best seat in the house. They are both judge and jury when it comes to telling those, who choose to read their sports column, how it is. Looking at his numbers as of July 3rd, I'd say some of his teammates should invest in their own rocking chairs, because the man is having a rocking good time.

I remember when I was a boy and Willie Mays was in his last year as a Giant, before being traded to the New York Mets for some unknown pitcher named Charlie Williams, my father would go into this song like rant of Rocking Chair's got me every time Mays' name was announced as the batter or mentioned in the starting lineup. As much as it bothered me, I knew #24 was a shadow of his former self.

So far, the same cannot be said of #25.

kevin marquez