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safi0 Donating Member (993 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-04-06 01:09 PM
Original message
A question about Bonds and the HR issue
What do you think the reaction would be if it was Griffey Jr. about to break Ruth's record not Bonds. I think a lot, not all by any means, of the anger towards Bonds is because of the fact that he is a black man. The thing is a lot of these people can hide behind the fact that their is widespread perception that Bonds used/s steroids and because Bonds comes off as a dick. But Griffey is a pretty beloved person. The worst thing people can say about him is that he's had injury problems.

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RedSpartan Donating Member (736 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-04-06 01:31 PM
Response to Original message
1. First, it's not Ruth's record. It's Hank Aaron's record.
Second, I disagree with you saying a lot of the anger towards Bonds is because he's black. I think the anger is because he is almost certainly a cheat and a liar and, by all accounts, a jerk in public an private.

Last, if it was Griffey approaching Hank Aaron, I think things would be different. The real tricky issue for baseball is the steroid accusations against Bonds, not necessarily his personality, and no one so far as I know has ever accused Griffey of using steroids. In my opinion, the steroid issue in baseball has really caused a new appreciation for just how good some guys are/were who haven't been accused, such as Griffey, Thomas, and McGriff.
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safi0 Donating Member (993 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-04-06 03:55 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. I acknowledge
Edited on Thu May-04-06 03:56 PM by safi0
That a lot of it, probably a majority, is because he is a jerk and the steroid issue, but I don't think you can deny that their are some people who don't like it because Bonds is black, and would hold ill-will towards Griffey if he was doing this, or Pujols or A-Rod when they start approaching the record.

Bonds is about to pass Ruth not Aaron's that's why I said Ruth not Aaron. Ruth's 714 is still held in very high regard although he doesn't have the record anymore and no one can deny that passing Ruth is going to be a huge deal.
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erpowers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-04-06 08:39 PM
Response to Original message
3. Race
I think a large amount of the anger toward Bonds is the fact that he is black and about to pass a record held by a white baseball player. My reason for this thinking is that when Mark McGwire was closing in on Roger Maris' record many people pretty much so knew that McGwire had cheated in some way. Yet people cheered him on anyway. It is possible that another white baseball player was cricitized when he attempted to pass Maris' record, but I am not sure. Some people bring up Sammy Sosa and say that Sosa was close to breaking/broke Maris' record also and nobody raised a fuss about him. I tend to think some of the reason people did not boo Sosa is that McGwire was the one who broke the record first. Also, if you raise a fuss about Sosa you would have to raise a fuss about McGwire. I think if Sosa had been leading the race we may have heard more about steroids that year. Also, I look at the number of white players that admitted to steroid use without the same reaction as Bonds. Just look at Giambi, people treated him better than they are treating Bonds. Why did all these people who are angry now not get angry when all the white players were admitting they had used steroids. So I think much of the anger has to do with Bonds being black. Maybe I am wrong and if McGwire was about to break Ruth's record people would be treating him the same way they are treating Bonds; however, I think it has a large amount to do with race.
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safi0 Donating Member (993 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-04-06 09:43 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. I kind of come down
Between you and RedSpartan. I think that race is a factor but I don't think its the only factor. I think the Giambi comparison is valid except that Giambi never came close to breaking any records which is why I don't think their is the vitriole directed towards him that their is towards Bonds. With McGwire its kind of the ignorance is bliss type of reaction. Their wasn't, and still isn't, any real subtantive proof that McGwire used steroids. All their is, is Canseco's book and McGwire's testimony. But I will say this, people wanted to believe McGwire is innocent and people want to believe Bonds is guilty and I think race is one of many factors in that
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RedSpartan Donating Member (736 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 07:30 AM
Response to Reply #3
7. Again, Bonds is not about to pass any record held
Edited on Fri May-05-06 07:37 AM by RedSpartan
by a white man -- Ruth no longer holds the record. And I don't think the Giambi comparison is valid, because Giambi admitted to using steroids, and Bonds continues to deny it. As for McGwire and Sosa, there were whispers at the time, but the moment was too big to be overpowered by them, especially given that baseball was "on its way back" after the 94 strike and kind of needed a moment like that to win the fans back. Now, however, after their ridiculous performance in front of Congress last year (McGwire all but taking the 5th with his "I'm not here to talk about the past" crap and Sosa mysteriously forgetting how to speak english), those two are just as big pariahs as Bonds. The difference is that they aren't playing any more, but he is. I guarantee you if McGwire or Sosa were still playing (and especially at such a high level as Bonds), they'd be booed as well.

I don't deny that some of the hate towards Bonds is probably because he's black, but that is by racists who would hate any black man. While people like that may be able to hide their racism behind criticism of Bonds as a selfish jackass, my opinion is that the vast majority of dislike towards the guy is because he's a cheat, liar, and prick.
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safi0 Donating Member (993 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 09:50 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Giambi
Has actually never admitted using steroids, publicly atleast. He said it in front of a grand jury, but he's still never said it publicly.

Also, Ruth may not hold the record but 714 is still a very significant number.

You basically acknowledge that my point is correct, we may be in disagreement about the extent of it. But, I don't think anyone can deny that race is a factor.

I brought this up because I was thinking about the Jimmy Rollins situation, at the beginning of the season when he flirted with the ht streak record and their was just this general uneasiness about it. The argument was that he was doing it over 2 seasons while Dimaggio did it one season. That's valid, but I don't think that was the only reason. Their was just this general uneasiness that made me believe that it wasn't just the fact that he was doing this over 2 seasons.
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RedSpartan Donating Member (736 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 10:11 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Giambi admitted it in front of the grand jury,
and apologized at a news conference. He never said the word "steroids" publicly, but as Joe Torre said, we all know what he's talking about.

I think you're trying to make a mountain out of a molehill. I don't deny that racism exists, and that some people don't like Bonds because he's back, just as I'm sure some people don't like Derek Jeter because he's half-black, half-white, or A-Rod because he's hispanic, or Jim Thome because he's white. But that doesn't mean that racism is an underlying factor in dislike or "general uneasiness" about a player or feat. Your Jimmy Rollins example leads me to believe that you see racism as a larger factor than it is. Again, I don't deny it exists, and I'm sure it is a factor, but I don't think to any greater degree than racism, sexism, etc. in society in general.
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safi0 Donating Member (993 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 12:01 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. But he still
Never admitted it publicly. He never said "I used steroids"

Honestly I don't think the majority of the anger towards Bonds is because he's black. I also don't think its because he used steroids. I think its because he's a dick. People haven't liked Bonds for a long, long time for that reason and the steroids reason only added to that, but it didn't start it. I think that if McGwire or Sosa were still pllaying it would be bad, but it wouldn't be nearly as bad as it is with Bonds.

I think racism is a big deal because I've experienced it firsthand. I think the Jimy Rollins example shows that no matter how friendly a player is, when a black man is approaching a white man's record there's going to be a lot of people cheering against him because of the color of his skin.
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RedSpartan Donating Member (736 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 12:57 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. So far as I know,
the only ones who have actually said "I used steroids" are Jose Canseco and the late Ken Cameniti. Giambi told the truth, under oath, to the grand jury (whereas Bonds has apparently committed the impeachable crime of perjury). We all know he did it, and while I admit his press conference apologizing while not saying what he was apologizing for was a bit silly, putting it together we all know full well what's up. That's a million times more than Bonds has ever done and, so far as I know, the closest any active ballplayer has ever come to saying "I used steroids." Whether those words came out of his mouth don't matter. It wasn't necessary given the situation -- the admitted truth, under oath, was leaked, and he did not deny it, he apologized.

And while I'm sorry you have experienced racism, I see no point to your Jimmy Rollins example. It's a straw man. You only mention a "general uneasiness" that you felt and that you don't think the two season thing was the only reason. That's what you think, and is purely subjective. No doubt race is a factor for some people, but those people are racists to begin with, whether rooting for or against a baseball player or not. I can just as easily say that I think some people favored Matt Leinert over Vince Young because he's white, but that doesn't make it an issue large enough to give any credit to.

The bottom line is that you and I don't disagree on this. Racism will, sadly, probably always be a factor in who some people decide to root for or against and why. My opinion is that such people are a minority, and aren't worth paying attention to.
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rinsd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-09-06 11:04 AM
Response to Reply #8
22. Race as a factor vs. Bonds public persona as an asshole
If race were factor for the huge majority of people Gary Sheffield would get more shit than Giambi....he doesn't. I won't deny there are dickheads who hate Boinds because of his color but to claim his treatment is because of that is to give solace to a true piece of garbage.

"I brought this up because I was thinking about the Jimmy Rollins situation, at the beginning of the season when he flirted with the ht streak record and their was just this general uneasiness about it."

Dude, he was quite a ways away and even then people went apeshit over it. Why? Because noone since Molitor 20 years ago hit in as many in a row! No one actually thinks the streak will get broken. BTW extra points for the longest hitting streak in baseball(minors & college included) and who did it.

"The argument was that he was doing it over 2 seasons while Dimaggio did it one season. That's valid, but I don't think that was the only reason."

Baseball invented a new record to acknowledge his achievement, some purists are uneasy with such a development.

"Their was just this general uneasiness that made me believe that it wasn't just the fact that he was doing this over 2 seasons."

What uneasiness? People LOVE Jimmy Rollins. ESPN was breaking into games to show his at bats. What are you talking about?


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northzax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 04:26 PM
Response to Reply #7
15. and that's where race becomes a factor
Edited on Fri May-05-06 04:26 PM by northzax
people still think of Babe Ruth as the home run king (not people who know baseball, of course, but the lay follower) That's a racial issue right there. Why is the Babe the legend, and not Hammerin' Hank? obviously, part of it is the mythology of baseball as a pure game from the nation's youth, and Babe wore pinstripes, while Aaron toiled in relatively obscure markets (pre-Ted Turner, Atlanta was a minor team) but part of it is certainly racial.

remember, Ted Williams was as loathed by the media in his day as Bonds is today, we expect our black men in baseball to be good boys, and not rock the boat.
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erpowers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 09:56 PM
Response to Reply #7
20. The Record
I would like to point out that I know and knew before you wrote it that Hank Aaron held the home run record. However, if you watch ESPN they are saying Ruth's record of 714. I think they just mean his second place record, but I believe ESPN has been using the term record. Maybe they just said Bonds was about to pass Ruth for second of the homerun list and I just assumed that it was the same to say record and second place.
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rinsd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-09-06 11:07 AM
Response to Reply #20
23. They've been using the pharse "Ruth's record"
It's kind of like a milestone like 3000 hits, 500 HRs. But its held by Ruth who in the land of baseball goids is unquestionably Zeus.

Personally I like baseball's take on this. There is only one record and it is held by Hank Aaron.
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Captain Hilts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-04-06 10:39 PM
Response to Original message
5. No. Bonds is a bastard. Griffey's a nice guy who went home to Cincy.
Edited on Thu May-04-06 10:40 PM by MookieWilson
I don't think it's a 'black' thing at all.

Remember, Roger Maris suffered a lot of abuse and hate. He got a ton of abuse.
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KitchenWitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 03:56 AM
Response to Original message
6. Hank Aaron is a black man.
He broke Ruth's record. At the time they had to have a lot of security around him, but now he is very beloved in baseball.

I think most of the issues with Bonds are the fact that he is an asshole, not that he is black.
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BOSSHOG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 10:31 AM
Response to Reply #6
10. A very large, obnoxious asshole
bonds cares about bonds, not the game nor the fans. His color is irrelevant.
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KitchenWitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 03:36 PM
Response to Reply #10
14. Yes indeed!
Barry Bonds is truly a waste of human skin.
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northzax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 04:33 PM
Response to Reply #10
16. well, his teammates seem to like him
in fact, most people who actually know him seem to like him. He isn't poison in the clubhouse, he makes teams better by being on them. He has never publically aired a dispute with another player, or his teams, he has never held out for more money, he has never asked for his contract to be renegotiated, he has never skipped Spring Training (except for medical reasons) he has never been suspended by the league for on infraction (on or off the field), he plays his ass off every time he's on the field. Have you ever seen him not run out a ground ball? or lazily chase a ball in the field? Seems that's showing a lot of respect for the game. So he doesn't answer questions from the media? and that means he doesn't show respect for the game?
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rinsd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue May-09-06 11:18 AM
Response to Reply #16
24. His teammates?
Have you seen the interviews of teammates dealing with him both last year and this year?

Did you forget the very public spats he's had with Jeff Kent and others?

Did you happen to read this excerpt from a new book about him?

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=pearlma...
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Lefty48197 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-07-06 02:09 PM
Response to Reply #6
21. Hank got tons of hate mail when he was approaching Ruth's record
He still has a bitter taste in his mouth from the whole affair. The fact that so much of the mail came with Atlanta area postmarks was what prompted Hank to ask to be traded to the Milwaukee Brewers, because he had always felt the love when he played for the Milwaukee Braves.
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JohnKleeb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 03:31 PM
Response to Original message
13. As the others have said its Aaron's record
and Aaron like Bonds is black however Hank Aaron exemplified class and the only people who gave him a hard time when he was preparing to break Ruth's record were bigots. So, no if Ken Griffey Jr were about to break the record people including myself would be cheering him on. It's a shame that injuries ruined Junior. I don't think race has anything to do with it honestly. If Bonds weren't a dick and the steroid issue wasn't being discussed people would be cheering him on too. When Bonds broke McGuire's single season record in 2001 he didn't get many cheers really either which I think had to do with how quickly the record wsa rebroken and because Bonds isn't a well liked figure.
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northzax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 04:35 PM
Response to Reply #13
17. Aaron HAD to exemplify class
uppity black men didn't get far in baseball at the time. It's a sign of progress that baseball now treats black and white players the same in that respect. IF Aaron didn't show the appropriate humility, he would have been out of baseball at a very young age.
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JohnKleeb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 04:41 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. True
Aaron really is a classy guy. It's great that he, Mays, and many of the other all time greats are still around.
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Robbie Michaels Donating Member (612 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-05-06 05:14 PM
Response to Original message
19. Here's my take
Bonds is an asshole. I remember reading an article in Sport magazine over a decade ago when he made a reporter stand on his porch for four hours in a sweltering sun to do an interview. The reporter showed up on time, but Bonds made him wait. If I could find a link, I'd post it. I believe the story I found that in was printed during his first couple of years in Pittsburgh. I had a subscription while I was attending college.

It's not the first, or last time, he's been surly with fans and the media. He's reaping what he sows and it doesn't matter what the color of his skin is. He's an asshole so I'll treat him as one.

Griffey I could get behind. He's friendly and doesn't have a mean word to say to anyone.
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