Barry Bonds Beats The System


Do you think Barry Bonds can still hit? Do you think he would like a DH job in the American League while his appeal is pending for the next year-and-a-half?

The Bonds saga over steroids has been going on just about as long as I have had grandchildren–and both of them are in elementary school now. The latest twist, of him being sentenced to no more than 30 days of house arrest for his obstruction of justice conviction, tells me that the judge herself didn’t really believe too strongly in the government’s case. The attorneys on the other side were asking for 15 months in prison.

On and on it goes. Besides the 30 days of house arrest, Bonds was ordered to do 250 hours of community service and pay a small fine, $4,000. To Bonds, of course, shelling out 4,000 bucks is like us buying a roll of stamps. His lawyer immediately said Bonds will appeal the sentence and the judge said OK. Bonds, who faced numerous other charges in a multi-million-dollar, years-long investigation, was convicted of a single count of misleading a grand jury in 2003. Bonds’ counsel predicted it will be 18 months before the appeal is heard.

Meanwhile, shouldn’t Barry be going back to work? He probably would like to play another season, even though he is 47 years old.

Over the last couple of days I have heard a fair amount of reaction to the Bonds case. Some off-the-cuff TV anchormen think he should be doing hard time at Alcatraz. Some people think the entire investigation was a travesty and lawmen should have been chasing “real criminals.” The most interesting aspect of the entire investigatory process to me was hearing that at the time the feds were spending millions in their attempt to bring Bonds to justice the same regional office had its budget cut and couldn’t investigate some serious drug cases. If that’s true, then you do wonder about misplaced priorities.

Some observers indicated that they didn’t think confining Bonds to his home for 30 days was such a harsh punishment because his house is sort of like Taj Mahal II. It’s got more rooms than a luxury hotel and a bigger swimming pool. It is 15,000 square feet with six bedrooms and 10 bathrooms (don’t ask me why the disparity) and a gym. I bet he has cable, to0. The point being made was that for most of us being sentenced to Bonds’ house would be more like a vacation avoiding winter than a hardship. C’est la vie. I knew Barry probabably had a nicer house than I do.

Perhaps this entire Bonds episode bodes well for Roger Clemens, who is also in hot water because of some comments he made to the wrong people who don’t believe him. Possibly Clemens, who has yet to be convicted of anything, will someday be sentenced to spend 30 days in Barry Bonds’ house. They can play Ping-Pong all the live-long day.

Anyway, soon enough, Bonds will be facing another jury judging his behavior–on whether or not he should be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Tags: Barry Bonds Hall Of Fame Roger Clemens Steroids