Barry Bonds (Barry Lamar Bonds) was born on July 24, 1964 in Riverside, California. He made his Major League debut on May 30, 1986 for the Pittsburgh Pirates. In 1986, his rookie year, he hit .223 with 16 home runs and 48 RBI. Bonds played for the Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants over the course of his 21 year career.
Despite the numerous steroid accusations, Bonds has still put together one of the great careers in recent baseball history.He holds the all-time record with 7 MVP awards, including 4 in a row from 2001-2004. No one else has more than 3 consecutive MVPs. In 2001 Bonds hit 73 homers and slugged .863, both records. He also has career marks for walks and intentional walks. Broke the most prestigious record in MLB, when he smacked his 756 home run on 8/7/2007 off Washington Nationals pitcher, Mike Bascik to surpass Hank Aaron (755) as the home run King.
On November 15, 2007, Bonds was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of perjury and obstruction of justice, in conjunction with a four-year investigation into BALCO and whether he took performance enhancing drugs. The charge is that he lied to the grand jury under oath about whether his trainer Greg Anderson ever injected him with steroids, and whether he ever knowingly took steroids and not flaxseed oil, as he claimed. The indictment came as a bit of a surprise to most, since the investigation had gone on for so long. It is unknown at this time what prompted the indictment on that particular date.
Bonds entered a plea of "not guilty" on December 6, 2007, and posted this statement on his website:
- I want to thank my family, friends and fans for their unwavering support. It means everything to me. Despite the charges that have been filed against me, I still have confidence in the judicial system and especially in the judgment of the citizens who will decide this case. And I know that when all of this is over, I will be vindicated because I am innocent.
Bonds' name was mentioned in the Mitchell Report about being implicated in the BALCO scandal:
"Peter Magowan said in an interview that during a phone conversation he once asked Barry Bonds if he took steroids. Bonds replied that he used a substance for sleeping problems and arthritis, which he only later found out was steroids. Magowan says Bonds claimed he did not try to hide his use of the substance from the rest of his team."
Steroids or no, Bonds is one of the best hitters in baseball history. It all starts with his preternatural understanding of the strike zone: as one of the most patient hitters ever (and that's not counting his insane intentional walk totals), Bonds knows that all he has to do to be successful is to wait for the pitcher to throw him the right pitch. And once the right pitch is served up, watch out... Even at age 42, Bonds has scary power, especially when pulling the ball to right field. Bonds owns two of the quickest hands in MLB history, and the bat speed that they generate allows him to leverage his short, compact stroke into pure power. Bonds also has good hand-eye coordination and bat control for a power hitter, which allows him to hit for a solid average. If there's a weakness to Bonds' offensive game, it's that his speed and baserunning abilities are completely shot at this point.
Defensively, Bonds is a shell of the man who once won 8 gold gloves in 9 years from 1990-1998. He can't throw anymore, and his total lack of speed makes him a liability out in left.
- Selected by the San Francisco Giants in the 2nd round of the free-agent draft - did not sign June 7, 1982.
- Selected by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 1st round (6th pick overall) of the free-agent draft on June 3, 1985 - signed on June 5, 1985.
- Granted free agency on October 26, 1992.
- Signed by the San Francisco Giants on December 8, 1992.
- Granted free agency on October 30, 2006.
- Signed as a Free Agent with the San Francisco Giants (February 15, 2007).
- Granted free agency on October 29, 2007.
Accomplishments & Awards
Major League Records
- 762 Home Runs
- 2,558 walks
- 688 intentional walks
- 73 home runs in a single season, 2001
- 8 home runs in a single post-season, 2002
- 449 different pitcher surrendering a home run to one batter
- 74 home runs since turning 40 years old
- 28 home runs in the year he turned 43 years old
- 13 consecutive seasons with 30 or more home runs (13), 1992–2004
- .863 slugging percentage in a single season, 2001
- 1.294 slugging percentage in a World Series, 2002
- 8 consecutive seasons with .600 slugging percentage or higher, 1998–2005
- .609 on-base percentage in a single season, 2004
- 232 walks in a single season, 2004
- 120 intentional walks in a single season, 2004
- 18 consecutive games with a walk
- 7 MVP awards, 1990, 1992–93, 2001–04 (the closest competitors trail with 3)
- 4 consecutive MVP awards, 2001–04
- 13 National League Player of the Month selections (the next highest in either league is 8 by Frank Thomas, and the next highest in the N.L. is 6 by George Foster, Pete Rose, and Dale Murphy)
- The oldest player to win the National League batting title (.370) for the first time (38), 2002
- Tied National League high with 4 home runs in the 2002 World Series, one short of major league record of 5, by Reggie Jackson of the 1977 New York Yankees.
- Shares the most consecutive plate appearances with a walk (7)
- Shares the most consecutive plate appearances reaching base (15)
- He tied his father, Bobby, for the most seasons with 30 home runs and 30 stolen bases (5), and are the only father-son members of the 30-30 club.
Records (Active Only)
- 1,996 RBI (1st)
- .444 on-base percentage (1st)
- 2,227 runs scored (1st)
- 2,986 games (1st)
- 1,440 extra-base hits (1st)
- 12.92 at-bats per home run (1st)
- 5,976 total bases (1st)
- 2,935 hits (1st)
- 601 doubles (1st)
- .607 slugging percentage (2nd)
- 514 stolen bases (2nd)
- 9,847 at-bats (2nd)
- 77 triples (6th)
- 91 sacrifice flies (8th)
- 1,539 strikeouts (9th)
Bonds is the lone member of the 500–500 club, which means he has hit at least 500 home runs (762) and stolen 500 bases (514). He is also one of only four baseball players all-time to be in the 40–40 club (1996), which means he hit 40 home runs (42) and stole 40 bases (40) in the same season.
- 5-time San Francisco Giants Player of the Year (1998, 2001–04)
- 7-time Baseball America NL All-Star (1993, 1998, 2000–04)
- 3-Time Major League Player of the Year (1990, 2001, 2004)
- 3-Time Baseball America MLB Player of the Year (2001, 2003–04)
- 8-Time Gold Glove winner for NL Outfielder (1990–94, 1996–98)
- 12-Time Silver Slugger winner for NL Outfielder (1990–94, 1996–97, 2000–04)
- 14-time All-Star (1990, 1992–98, 2000–04, 2007)
- 3-Time NL Hank Aaron Award winner (2001–02, 2004)
- Listed at #6 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, the highest-ranked active player, in 2005.
- Named a finalist to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team in 1999, but not elected to the team in the fan balloting.
- Rating of 352 on Baseball-Reference.com's Hall of Fame monitor (100 is a good HOF candidate); 9th among all hitters, highest among hitters not in HOF yet.
- The second player to twice have a single-season slugging percentage over .800, with his record .863 in 2001 and .812 in 2004. Babe Ruth was the other, with .847 in 1920 and .846 in 1921.
- Became the first player in history with more times on base (376) than official times at bats (373) in 2004. This was due to the record number of walks, which count as a time on base but not a time at-bat. He had 135 hits, 232 walks, and 9 hit-by-pitches for the 376 number.
- With his father Bobby (332, 461), leads all father-son combinations in combined home runs (1,094) and stolen bases (975), respectively through September 26, 2007.
- Played minor league baseball in both Alaska and Hawaii. In 1983, he played for the Alaska Goldpanners of Fairbanks in the Alaska Baseball League, and in 1986, he played for the Hawaii Islanders in the Pacific Coast League.
- He is the son of Bobby Bonds and the cousin of Reggie Jackson.
- Bonds' son, Nikolai, is a batboy for the Giants, and always sits next to his dad in the dugout during games.
- Run, Barry, Run! -- an exclusive ArmchairGM game.