After a government prosecution that lasted nearly seven years, a federal jury Wednesday convicted home-run king Barry Bonds on one charge of obstruction of justice for impeding a grand jury investigation into illegal steroid distribution.
The judge in the case declared a mistrial on three remaining counts.
After batting .467 his senior year, Bonds was picked by the San Francisco Giants in the 1982 MLB Draft. However, Bonds and the Giants could not come to an agreement on a contract so Bonds decided to attend Arizona State University (ASU). He had a brilliant career at ASU, posting career totals of 45 home runs, 175 RBIs, and a .347 batting average.
Bonds was drafted for a second time in 1985, this time by the Pittsburgh Pirates with the sixth overall pick. He made his major league debut in 1986 and finished the year playing in 113 games, hitting 16 home runs and stealing 36 bases.
His numbers say it all. Eight Gold Glove awards. 13-time All-Star. Seven-time Most Valuable Player, four of them consecutive. During the 1996 season he became only the third member of the 40-40 club, having at least 40 home runs and 40 stolen bases. Bonds is also the only member of the 500-500 club, with 500 long balls and 500 stolen bases. In 2004 he was walked an astounding 232 times, 120 of them intentional, making him the first player ever to surpass the 200 mark in a single season. The feat helped him take over first place on the all-time list.
As you can see, Bonds is the complete package. He can do it all - hit, run and field. But lastly, let's look at a measurement of how valuable Bonds is to his team. To measure the value of a player to his team, baseball statisticians typically look at a players "OPS" statistic. OPS is a player's On Base Percentage + Slugging Percentage. For his career, Bonds has averaged nearly 1000 OPS. Those are numbers only hitters like Ted Williams and Babe Ruth can talk about. But as we mentioned earlier, Bonds adds more than hitting to his game. He's the complete player - the hitter, the fielder, and the runner. And his complete package is what makes him the best left fielder to ever play the game of baseball.
From 1990 on through the rest of his career, Barry Bonds laid down one sacrifice bunt
Bonds actually had four sac bunts in his career, but two of them came when he was a rookie, and another came in 1989. The fourth and final sac bunt came in 1998. It came on September 23, 1998, to be specific. With the Giants trailing the Pirates 1-0 in the sixth inning, Bonds bunted Rey Sanchez to second base. It was such a moment that opposing pitcher Chris Peters never forgot about it.
During his 21 years as a MLB stalwart, Bonds managed to grow his net worth into a sizable amount that is currently $82,465,000. But problems started to creep into the mix in the early 2000s when Barry, as a San Francisco Giant, started launching too many of those baseballs over too many walls.
On May 28, 1998, while the Giants were loosing to the Arizona Diamondbacks (8-6), Bonds was walked intentionally with the bases loaded. Buck Showalter, the Arizona manager, realized that Bonds was an always dangerous batter. Therefore, he didn't want to take a chance (with the bases loaded and 2 out in the bottom of the 9th inning) that Bonds would hit a grand slam homerun to win the Game for the Giants.
The petulant slugger has come as close as anyone to mastering the art of hitting—too bad no one ever wants to pitch to him, and too bad his relationship with the media is so bad that we may never learn the secrets of his success. For every ball he’s knocked out of the park, Barry has trotted to first almost four times. And for every reporter who gets a civil response from him, four or so others storm away thinking up a new way to bash him.
If we look at wOBA, we see that Ruth was consistently a better overall hitter than Bonds. Ruth's .510 career wOBA is still tops all-time, while Bonds ranks 11th (.439) just ahead of Joe DiMaggio. But it wasn't until Bonds' age 36 season, the year he hit 73 home runs, that he bested Ruth in wOBA for a single season.
It really is too bad Bonds career has been tainted by the (alleged?) use of steroids. Up until the age of 35, Bonds wasn't quite Ruthian, but he was in the neighborhood same area code.
Barry Lamar Bonds was born on July 24, 1964, in Riverside, California to baseball legend Bobby Bonds. He won numerous MVP and Golden Glove Awards and made history when he broke Hank Aaron's all-time Major League Baseball home run record of 755.
The record-breaking Barry Bonds 756 home run ball, which eclipsed Hank Aaron's all-time record, was sold Saturday in an online auction at scpauctions.com for $752,467.20. The buyer of the historic ball has been identified as Marc Ecko, a prominent fashion designer from New York.
The record-tying 755 home run ball was also sold for $186,750 to a buyer who has so far remained anonymous.