Barry Bonds, (Should Be) Hall of Famer
Jack R. Wallace 2.21.19
Every year during the long baseball offseason, the Baseball Hall of Fame votes on people who are in the selection. For the past couple years, one of the most controversial baseball players in history, Barry Bonds, is yet to receive his induction. Bonds, the leading home run hitter of all time, was a known steroid user (He tested positive for PED use in 2000 and 2001), which some believe should keep him out of the hall of fame.
In order to be considered for induction into the Hall of Fame you must have played 10 seasons of baseball in the MLB. The Hall considers one game in a season as a full season, so there’s a way for someone to play one major league game a year for 10 years and still be eligible to be in the HoF. Outside of meeting the time requirement you must be out of the game for a minimum of 5 years. So when Bonds stopped playing in 2007 he was first eligible in the 2012-2013 Hall of Fame class. If you don’t make it into the hall your first year eligible you must maintain 5% of the vote any given year. Baseball writers are responsible for voting in players who are eligible.
Let’s get this straight, based on statistics alone Bonds should be in the Hall of Fame. Bonds is best known for breaking Hank Aaron’s home run record of 755. Common fans who might follow baseball but not the ins and outs of it might not know just how dominant of a player Bonds was during his 21 years playing in the Major League. Bonds’ accolades include being a 7 time MVP, 8 time Golden Glove winner, a 2 time batting title winner, a 14 time MLB all star, a 12 time silver slugger, and finally he was the 3 time ML player of the year.
These accolades alone should catapult Bonds into the Hall of Fame. Baseball is one of the biggest sports to track analytics, there are so many stats that truly define Bonds’ greatness. For example, Bonds leads the all time list for intentional walks. Teams were so afraid to pitch Bonds the ball they’d rather have him on base than even risk him hitting a ball. With that being said Bonds wasn’t just some behemoth who would stomp his way to the plate and crunch baseballs into orbit. He was also a skilled baserunner. Bonds is the ONLY member of the 500 home run and 500 stolen bases club. He’s also the only member of the 400 home run and 400 stolen bases club. Bonds was truly unstoppable as a batter.
One part of Bonds’ career that’s often brought up is his massive ego and issues with the media. Bonds, whether it’s fair or not, is considered one of baseball's greatest villains. There are stories of Bonds not communicating with teammates and sitting in his own chair in the clubhouse and watching TV by himself instead of being with the team.
Although the media doesn’t support Bonds he has received the support of fans around the world. The usual line of accusations is that in that era is that “everyone knew about it” but owners had no interest in stopping the doping due to the money coming their way.
In conclusion I think that Bonds should be in the Hall of Fame. His dominance as a hitter and base runner is unmatched, while Bonds unfortunately might not make it in due to the “Villain” persona he groomed during his time as a player. He especially won’t make it in with the cloud of steroid abuse surrounding his name.