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Barry Bonds: 'God Knows I'm A Hall Of Famer'

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Barry Bonds is back in baseball as the new Marlins hitting coach, which means we get to experience his magical dealings with the media again.

That might sound like sarcasm, but it’s really not. Bonds gave some of the best soundbites in the game when he was a player, and he hasn’t missed a beat in his return to baseball as a coach. With Bonds returning to the MLB, it was only a matter of time before the elephant in the room was addressed. 2016 was Bonds’ fourth year on the Hall of Fame ballot, and he got 44.3% of the vote. It’s a nice little bump from his showing in 2015 when he garnered 36.8% of the vote, but he’s still ways away from the 75% that he’ll need in order to get inducted. Bonds, defiant as always, knows that he’s a Hall of Famer.

“I don’t really have an opinion about it,” Bonds told reporters. “I know that I’m a Hall of Fame player. I don’t really need to get into that. I’ll leave that to you guys to make that determination. That’s not my fraternity. But in my fraternity, in Major League Baseball, there’s not one player that can sit there and say that I’m not one. There’s not a coach that’s ever coached me that says I’m not one. Until you guys decide to make that final decision then that final decision will be made on your terms. But in my heart and soul, and God knows I’m a Hall of Famer.”

Voting for the Hall of Fame is a great honor, but it’s an honor that I’d never want anything to do with — at least not while these Steroid Era guys are on the ballot. Do you not vote for steroid guys at all? Do you cover up the name and vote just based on the numbers? Do you put in only the best of the best steroid guys? What do you do?

Me personally, I think it’s just ridiculous to have a baseball Hall of Fame without the all-time home runs leader (and the all-time hits leader, but that’s a blog for another day). Did Bonds take performance-enhancing drugs? Yup. Is he a cheater? Absolutely. But that’s part of the history of the game. The Hall of Fame is supposed to tell the entire history of the game of baseball, and you can’t leave an entire era out. I don’t even agree with the fans who say to put Bonds and Roger Clemens in, but do it with an asterisk or some other indication that they were cheaters.

Baseball fans know who did what. The asterisk exists in the eyes of the fans who will go to visit their plaques. The asterisk exists when parents take their children to Cooperstown, point to their plaques and tell their kids how they were two of the greatest players in the history of the game, BUT they were cheaters.

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That being said, take one look at his baseball-reference page. It’s almost laugh out loud funny how great his numbers were. Without Bonds, the Hall of Fame is incomplete.