Marty Lurie Talks San Francisco Giants Baseball

How About This Man As The Next Giants Manager?

If the Felipe Alou era does end in San Francisco next season who will be the next manager of the Giants?

I have a suggestion. How about turning the club over to Barry Bonds? Make Bonds the player manager.

Click Below and I’ll tell you why this idea would work!

Whenever Bonds publically analyzes the problems of the current Giants he is right on the money. Bonds knows what it takes to win in the National League.

Bonds told the Giants last fall that they needed to get a big hitter to help him in the lineup. That observation still stands true today as the Giants continue to struggle to score runs.

Early in the season, he pointed out that poor starting pitching was going to be the Giants problem in 2004. He recently told the press that Pedro Feliz should be playing everyday. He wisely cautioned that everyone concerned with the club should be patient with Feliz. He said that Feliz, if given the chance to play, will develop into a topnotch player.

He’s right on the money.

When Bonds talks to the press they eat it up. When he chooses to share his thoughts on the game with the knights of the keyboard they hang on his every word. He is a very astute baseball man once he starts analyzing the game. He’s not afraid to speak his mind.

I think the players on the team will listen to him. He will also lead by example on the field.

Bonds physical limitations will be an issue over the next two years of his current contract. He still is the best judge of when he should sit or play. If the Giants hired a smart veteran baseball man to help Bonds with the in game decisions while he was on the field, then I think it could work.

There is precedent for naming a person similar to Bonds as manager.

The great Ted Williams was known as a loner on his Red Sox teams for years. Teddy Ballgame had a hostile relationship with the press in Boston during his entire career. Williams was even fined the princely sum of $5000.00 for spitting in the direction of the booing Boston fans in 1956.

The Washington Senators shocked the baseball world when owner Bob Short named Williams as manager of the Senators in 1969. Williams was an unqualified success.
He was named manger of the year while leading the team to an 86-76 mark, third in the AL East, an incredible improvement of 21 games over the 1968 season.

Like Williams, Bonds knows pitching. They both toyed with pitchers mercilessly their entire careers. Does Bonds know hitting? Also like Williams, Bonds is considered the best hitter to ever step into the batters box.

Can he run the ballclub? Can he relate to his players? Hall of Famers Ty Cobb, Frank Robinson, and Rogers Hornsby, all had egos bigger than Bonds and they managed for years in the majors.

Pete Rose was the last player manager in the game, unfortunately as it has turned out, Rose had other things on his mind while he prepared his lineup for the game. On the plus side, Pete created tremendous interest around the club and is still revered in Cincinnati.

If you’ve been to a game in San Francisco lately the fans cheer madly for Bonds every time he steps on the field. The fans unequivocally support Bonds without any regard to the BALCO cloud still hovering over him.

Bonds knows the game cold and if the Giants are indeed heading into a down period, thinking of retooling with younger players, then Bonds deserves the chance to run the show as he chases Hank Aaron’s record.

Going to a baseball game is entertainment. Fan interest would be incredibly high.

If you think about this idea for a few minutes, it’s not as wild as it first appears. Players like Bonds have been given the reins before, I’d like to see how Bonds would do, if decides he’s up for the challenge.

I’m betting he would be a success.

While I’m at it here’s another suggestion:

How about changing the rules for eligibility for election into the Hall of Fame. After watching Randy Johnson’s perfect game against the Braves on Tuesday, it struck me that his Hall of Fame status should be recognized this year.

Why wait? Johnson will ultimately be a first ballot hall of famer five years after he retires. So will Roger Clemens? If a player’s career is that outstanding, I say enshrine him now. I think the writers can be trusted to make intelligent decisions. They won’t tap a player until it is clear he deserves to stand with the greats of the game.

Why wait five years, the fans pay the freight for baseball, let the fans enjoy a star’s bright moments while they are fresh in everyone’s mind.

Critics of the Hall of Fame Museum in Cooperstown say it is a retirement home for older players. The Hall needs to involve younger fans. Recognizing the greats of the game while they are still active is a good place to start.


1 Anonymous { 05.22.04 at 11:54 am }

right on on both counts. Bold thinking but why not.
As for the Hall of Fame, should not Rickey Henderson be in now not 5 years after he stops screwing around
with the independent league. Rules can be changed – make it a 1 year wait then do the right thing.
Why should McGwire have to wait. He is a 1st round ballot.

Jerry F

2 VegasVic { 05.22.04 at 1:31 pm }

Why not enshrine them now?

What happens if it’s discovered, two years after he retires, that Clemens was taking steroids on his way to the bookie to bet on 2004 Astro games? Lord help the game if they had voted Rose in one year after he stopped playing and forever tarnished the impeccable integrity of our nation’s pastime.

The hall is for the best players to ever play the game. Put all three in today.

As far as Bonds being player/manager…..
You made too many sound arguments for even this Bonds hater to sarcastically debate. It could very well be not only the best thing to ever happen for the Giants but the best thing that could ever happen for Barry Bonds.

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