Barry Bonds was denied Hall of Fame selection, once again on Sunday, by an era committee. He needed at least 12 votes from a 16-person committee assigned to consider the eight-man Contemporary Baseball Era Players ballot. Bonds received fewer than four votes.
The era committee ballot offered Bonds another possible door to Cooperstown after his decade on the writers’ ballot passed without election.
Bonds, the all-time home run leader, will need to wait until 2025 for his next chance at enshrinement via the era committee vote.
Bonds hit 762 home runs. He won seven Most Valuable Player awards, 12 Silver Slugger awards and eight Gold Gloves in a career that spanned 22 seasons. He batted.298 with a.444 on-base percentage, 2,935 hits and 2,558 walks, of which 688 were intentional.
Bonds was never suspended for PED use during his career and has denied knowingly using steroids. He testified to a grand jury in 2003 that he used a clear substance and a cream that season, provided by a personal trainer who told him they were flaxseed oil and arthritis balm, but he did not think those substances were steroids.
Bonds was indicted in 2007 on charges of perjury and obstructing justice for allegedly lying under oath in saying he didn’t knowingly take steroids. In 2011, jurors found Bonds guilty on one count of obstruction of justice. A federal appeals court overturned that conviction in 2015, clearing Bonds of criminal charges in the federal investigation of PEDs in sports.
Willie Mays, the Hall of Famer and Bonds’ godfather, has also called for the former Giant to be inducted.
Barry Bonds is easily baseball’s most notorious anti-hero. He’s probably brought more excitement to the game than any player ever has, but he did it in a way that many would disapprove of. Regardless of your opinion of Bonds, there’s no denying that he is one of the greatest players of all time. He deserves to be in the Hall of Fame.
San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds. Photo courtsey of AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES