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Barry vs the Hall

Sigh.

As Barry Bonds nears his record 756th home run, he’s stockpiling quite a collection of souvenirs — bats, balls, helmets and spikes, pieces of baseball history perfectly suited for the Hall of Fame.

Whether he’ll donate any of them to Cooperstown, however, is in doubt.

“I’m not worried about the Hall,” the San Francisco slugger said during a recent homer drought. “I take care of me.”

No wonder those at the museum are getting concerned, especially with Bonds only 10 homers shy of breaking Hank Aaron’s career mark.

“There’s uncertainty,” Hall vice president Jeff Idelson acknowledged.

Around 35,000 artifacts are shown and stored at the shrine, and about a dozen pertain to Bonds.

There is a bat from his rookie year and cleats from him becoming the first player in the 400-homer/400-steal club. Unsolicited, he sent the bat and ball from his 2,000th hit. A batting practice bat from the 2002 World Series was the last thing Bonds provided.

“Doesn’t everybody have the right to decide to do it or not do it?” he said last week.

The most prized items, the ones that fans would really want to see, are missing.

Nothing directly from Bonds to highlight his 500th home run. Ditto for homers 714 and 715, when he tied and passed Babe Ruth. Same for anything tied to him topping Mark McGwire’s single-season total of 70.

Hall president Dale Petroskey went to visit Bonds at spring training last year, and instead walked smack into his reality show. The Giants talked to Bonds this year, and hope he’ll be in a giving mood as the big moment comes and goes.

So far, Bonds has not indicated he intends to share any Aaron-related memorabilia.

Barry Bonds has the absolute right to do whatever the heck he wants to do with his memorabilia items. Donate them to the Hall of Fame, bury them in his backyard, go on a national fire sale tour with Pete Rose, it’s all his business. But what this is going to do is give more grist to the mill of those who will ridiculously claim that Bonds doesn’t belong in the Hall of Fame. That’s the last thing those jokers need, and my head hurts already just thinking about the column inches this story will generate. It’s like Barry Bonds is daring the establishment to disrespect him. Please, someone, get this man a publicist and spare us all the soap opera.

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2 Comments

  1. Let’s see… Barry will be 43 this summer. Hrm… based on the amount of steroids he’s taken, I have two words: John Matuszak.

    Tooz croaked at 48 from ‘roid complications.

    If that happens, MLB can deal with his estate.

    And based on his actions, the fans would be the better for it.

  2. mike says:

    Give us another reason not to care Barry.