One of baseball’s biggest and most controversial stars in history will be making a return to the field. On Monday, Barry Bonds began a seven day stint as a special instructor with the San Francisco Giants. The man who holds the record for most career home runs hopes he could return to the Giants later in the season in the same capacity, an idea that manager Bruce Bochy endorsed if this week’s assignment goes well. According to Eric Chavez of the Arizona Diamondbacks, having Bonds back in uniform is good for the game. Said Chavez to USA Today:
” He’s got a lot to offer young kids,” Chavez said. “And maybe he can touch on some of those subjects that, moving forward, what players should be cognizant of and choices they should make going forward.
“He’s not coming back for the media glitz. He’s always hated it. He wants to put the uniform on. He knows he has to go through the questioning and the scrutiny. Ultimately, he’s coming back to get that interaction with the young players.”
The whole article, which you can read here, quotes Chavez as “thanking” Bonds and other notable players such as Sammy Sosa and Mark McGwire for helping make him and other players rich. Chavez played with Miguel Tejada and Jason Giambi on the Oakland Athletics, two players that have admitted taking steroids. In fact, Chavez suggests that everyone associated with Major League Baseball thank those guys for the sport’s recovery and growth since the strike that sacrificed the 1994 World Series.
I suppose time heals all wounds. Who would have thought McGwire would be the hitting coach for two Major League teams? While Bonds never had the warmest of personalities, perhaps some time away has helped soften his normally hardened exterior. Considering his track record without the alleged PED use, he was one of the all-time greats. I’ll bet a player or two in the San Fran organization will benefit from his advice.
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