Marty Lurie Talks San Francisco Giants Baseball

A humble Barry Bonds in 2007 ?

Barry Bonds signed his one year contract with the Giants and then went on a press conference and a couple of radio shows showing lots of humility and saying that he is back because he wants to help the Giants win a championship and he wants to break the home run record.OK Giants…Barry Bonds is in the plane, let’s get ready to take off!!!
The Gigantes have a New Barry and an Old Barry ready to report within a month to Scottsdale,Arizona for Spring Training ’07. This season will be a memorable for this franchise and it could go either way.

There could be a record broken and there could also be an indictement and maybe even a pennant race and for sure an All Star Game in the middle of the season. WOW ! Like MGM "That’s Entertainment".

Bonds signed his contract on Monday the 29th of February and the next day he visited the Giants front office at ATT Park and took pictures with over 100 Giants employees. I wasn’t there but according to Jim Moorehead of the Giants Media Department it was a very nice visit by Bonds with the front office people, the people that work behind the scenes and who are responsible for the show that takes place 81 times a year.

On this long awaited contract which took longer to put together than the Surge in Iraq Bonds gave the Giants the right to terminate his $15.8 million, one-year contract if he is indicted. This is in case he is charged in the Federal government’s steroids investigation. His lifelong friend Greg Anderson is in a California federal prison because he has refused to testify on whatever Bonds committed perjury when he told a Grand Jury in 2003 that he never knowingly used performance-enhancing drugs. The two reporters for the San Francisco Chronicle who wrote the book Game of Shadows are also facing a potential jail term for not revealing their sources. In this country is not a good idea for a public figure or personality not to relate well with the Media or to have the Media as the enemy. This is the only country in the world where the Media deposed a President out of office. Richard Nixon in 1975 over the Watergate scandal and by the investigation of Bernstein and Woodward.Do not put the Media against you, it is never a good deal.There are little secrets left in this instant world of e-mails,blackberries,text messages and blogs.
Back when in the days with no Cable TV,satelite radio,computer streamming and such a radio station could have an exclusive when there was a great moment on the field, a no hitter a broken record. Today the whole world knows about it in seconds, live. Everybody is piped to the action.

The week prior to the signing of the contract Barry Bonds proved positive for amphetamines. During the interviews to follow his announcement of the new contract he said "I am not talking because that is exactly what the people representing me(my attorneys)have told me. I am doing what they told me to do."

All-of-a-sudden there seems to be a much more humble Barry Bonds during this 2007 season. He is also talking about "teamwork"and how much he thinks teamwork is important to the chances of the Giants to win it all this year. The spin has started as he tries to rehabilitate his image but it might take longer than just one season to do that. Sammy Sosa just signed a minor league contract with the Texas Rangers but nobody is talking about Sosa and steroids or when Sosa appeared with Canseco,McGwire and Palmeiro in front of Congress. One reason might be that Sammy Sosa was a very likeable player with fans and media alike and there is an old saying ‘you reap what you sow’.

I also remember towards the end of Reginaldo Martinez Jackson(Reggie)he became very humble all-of-a-sudden when he could see the end of his career in site. Mister October became Mr.January through December. I remember doing a long(like 30 minute interview in Spanish)with Reggie in 1987 at the end of his career when he was a DH with the Angels.
That same Reggie Jackson was not very happy to give interviews for many years during his best seasons in Oakland. He would stiff me after he made me wait for a long time during batting practice on the field, promising that he will give me 5 minutes.Then he would walk by me and say "Sorry I don’t have time".

Something happens to a player when he can see the end of his career, specially players that for years had an attitude; the "I don’t need you"type of attitude, when in fact reporters also have a job to do as they gather information with reports and interviews. I spoke with Reggie Jackson this past season as he was traveling with the Yankees(team he works for)at Safeco Field in Seattle. He still difficult, but granted he doesn’t have to take batting practice anymore or do practice so he is much more accomodating with the media. So, there…I give him that, I am fair.

In the case of Barry Bonds we can only hope he hits at least 22 home runs and breaks Hank Aaron’s record but most important stays healthy during the whole season. Bonds played 130 games in 2006 with 367 at bats
26 home runs and 77 runs batted in. If he is healthy he should play around the same amount of games. Nobody expects Bonds to play 150 or more games.

The 7-time MVP seems eager to report to Spring Training in Scottsdale in a few weeks. Pitcher and cathers usually report in the middle of February and there should be no reason(although not that early)for Barry Bonds not to be in camp early this season. I have been traveling each Spring to the Valley of the Sun since the late 1970’S and I am already looking forward to Spring Training,the best part of the year for all in baseball, when every team has hope,every team looks good under the sunny skies in the desert.

2007 should be -more than likely- Barry Bonds last season in San Francisco. A tremendous career for a man who was born in Southern California went to High School in San Mateo and then to college in Arizona.
Major League Baseball will be providing extra security this season for Barry specially when the Giants go on the road. We all know he is much loved at ATT but much hated in many other places. It will be a challenge. Commissioner Bud Selig who said when Barry broke Babe Ruth’s record as #2 all time in the home run list "We do not honor second place for anything" might have to eat some crow and honor #1 because Barry Bonds
is on his way to be the top home run leader of all time. Like it or not.
Only two things are on Bonds way of breaking the record: injury or indictment, the "I"word.

2007 promises to be an exciting season with the Gigantes and only God knows what is in store for the next 8 months or so.


The Hispanic Heritabe Baseball Museum Hall of Fame greeted thousands of fans as they showcased their displays at the Giants Winterfest on January 20th at ATT Park and then at McAfee Coliseum on the 27th for the Athletics Fanfest. We spoke with a lot of baseball fans and friends of the Museum.
The HHBM is looking forward to exhibiting during All Star Week in San Francisco this July during the Midsummer Classic. The Museum’s goal is to open a permanent home in the Bay Area during this seaso and is currently speaking with the people that will make this happen.


1 Randy_Bell { 02.01.07 at 2:44 pm }

I will be happy when Barry breaks his vaunted record then "sails off into the sunset". The Giants need desperately to rebuild in the post-Bonds era, right now they are in sad shape, one of the worst franchises in baseball IMHO. They have little or no Farm System and what superstar wants to come to the Giants? I kind of chuckled when people in recent past were rolling off names like Manny Ramirez, Vlad Guerro, even Gary Mathews Jr. – as possible free agent aquisitions. The sad truth is, the Giants have little or no prospects, no trading leverage, and nobody worth his salt {no really good ballplayer, no star} wants to come there to play right now. I understand Zito went there for the money and for the continued Bay Area familiarity {he still lives in S.F.} – but he certainly didn’t go there for any chance at a championship anytime soon. The Giants are a *terrible* franchise right now, one might label the Geritol Gang the last few years, and until Barry leaves it seems they have little chance of getting any better. Just my two cents, I think Barry was a great player, one of the greatest ever, even despite the taint of steriods. But his time has come and gone, and let’s hope he reaches his milestone this year so that he {and the Giants} can move on. 🙂 Thanks Maury for your nice articles!

2 Anonymous { 09.22.07 at 1:14 pm }

3 Anonymous { 09.22.07 at 1:50 pm }

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