756 or Cheater*?

By now we have all seen the video, we have all read the papers and we all know Barry Bonds is your new All-Time HR leader. How does that sound? Not too good to most people.

Last night we saw the greatest record in sports broken in San Francisco. Bonds finally hit HR No. 756. Say what you want about him, but it was an event we will all remember. In an era of the "homerun", this was something that caught everyone's attention, whether you're a sports fan or not. Everything that came out of the chase for HR 756 would be good enough to put on the silver screen. It had drama, suspense, controversy, betrayal, loyalty, love, compassion, determination and it had its big star, Barry Bonds.

Steroids or not, what Bonds accomplished was nothing short of spectacular and last night demonstrated just that. Several Major Leaguers have been suspended for using illegal performance enhancing drugs and still haven't accomplished anything near what Barry did. It still takes skill to hit a ball over the fence. Did Barry have a little help? All the evidence leads you to believe yes. But what evidence are we talking about? His physical appearance? He allegedly began using steroids in 1998, and since then, his appearance has bulked up, to the point where he's stronger and his bat speed is quicker than it was back in his 20's. He is under investigation for perjury by a federal grand jury regarding his testimony in the BALCO case, but he has not been indicted. His trainer Greg Anderson has been in and out of jail solely because he won't talk on the issue of what he knows about Bonds and steroids. In 2003 Anderson was indicted by a federal grand jury in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California and charged with supplying anabolic steroids to athletes. In March, 2006 the book Game of Shadows, written by Lance Williams and Mark Fainaru-Wada, was released and stated that Bonds used stanozolol and a host of other steroids. That's more than enough evidence for most people.

We may never know what exactly was said during the BALCO trial and what was found during the BALCO investigation but until we get some official facts, I believe we should lay off Bonds. We have all at some point or another taken the easy way out or "cheated" to get ahead, so for us to reduce Bonds is ridiculous. The fact remains that the HR record of all-time was broken and it now belongs to Barry Lamar Bonds. In a society where we live by "innocent until proven guilty" we should all wait until we get the official facts. Until then, we should accept Bonds as the new all-time HR king and take it for what it is: a great accomplishment by a great athlete. Besides, a guy named Alex Rodriguez is on pace to one day break the record himself. Now that the chase is finally over, we can all get back to our everyday lives... and watch A-Rod's chase of Bonds and his all-time HR record*.
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