Raznor's Rants

Costarring Raznor's reality-based friends!

Monday, May 15, 2006

The Midnight Rambler:
Who cares about Barry Bonds and #714? Well, I do. Sort of.

Posted by Ross

I care. I think the whole thing is utterly fascinating. It's what makes baseball, well, baseball. This isn't to say I'll be watching, unless by accident. I don't really watch sports anymore. But, boy do I love the stats. And I love the stories.

Even when Barry Bonds was skinny Barry, he still got booed everywhere he went, even at the All-Star game. And now that he's actually a bad guy, if you believe in such things (which I only kind of do), San Francisco has become this haven from really rabid hostility everywhere Bonds goes. It's interesting, because San Francisco has always been known as a haven for tolerance. It's also, incidentally, a place where you can get "kind bud" from friendly folks on the street wearing stocking caps... which is to say, controversial narcotics that may be shunned by a large portion of the country are a little more accepted in Northern California (God bless that place). And I'm not saying this is why BALCO was essentially a Bay Area phenomenon. I'm merely noting that BALCO was essentially a Bay Area phenomenon.

And all this talk about "He's a disgrace." Fuck that. I mean, yeah, he is a disgrace in the way steroids are disgraceful and really, really bad for your body. But if we can just be libertarian about the whole thing for a second here, then maybe we can take a step back and say, what have we here? Why this is a very interesting chapter in the strange phenomenon we humans call professional sports. And no children got bombed. And no multi-chinned CEOs pilfered the American public.

Back in the day, drunken fans used to rush the field and beat the shit out of the umpire if they didn't like his calls. Hell, remember the 1899 Cleveland Spiders? The Spiders' owner won the St. Louis Browns at a sheriff's auction and decided that St. Louis would be a better place to turn a profit, so he moved all of the Spiders' best players (including Cy Young) to the Browns. The Spiders were 12-104 that season.

And need I even mention segregation, or the Black Sox, or John Rocker?

Right, wrong, who cares? It's part of the lore, baby. It's happening. Live it. Breathe it. And then write a book about it.

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