Blog Entry

What does guilty verdict mean for Barry Bonds?

Posted on: April 13, 2011 5:37 pm
Edited on: April 13, 2011 7:17 pm
 

BondsBy Evan Brunell

Barry Bonds was found guilty of obstruction of justice on Wednesday, but the jury in Bonds' case could not come to an accord on the perjury charge which cracks the door open for his Hall of Fame chances.

While the government could still re-try Bonds on the three counts of perjury for telling the grand jury charged with making some sense of the whole steroid mess in 2003 that he did not knowingly use steroids or human growth hormone, the main takeaway from today is that the steroid era is most definitively not over.

Everyone thought that once Bonds was strung up on guilty counts or found innocent, that it would help to bring the steroid era to a close. But as has happened time and time again, somehow the one solution that ends up continuing the saga popped up again.

Bonds' obstruction of justice charge essentially means that Bonds made the grand jury's job investigating the steroids scandal back in 2003 that much more difficult. The government had contended that Bonds was evasive and misleading, which spurred the charge, and the jury has agreed. However, it's a rather odd charge to come back guilty on -- if Bonds wasn't found guilty of lying, how exactly did he obstruct justice?

The vagaries therein are perplexing. Can you really ding Bonds and consider the fact he lied based solely on the obstruction of justice charge? No -- if you assume he was telling the truth, he still could be found guilty of obstruction of justice just by being an overall uncooperative witness and/or the circumstances demanding that he essentially obstruct justice by parroting a skeptical claim that he took steroids, but did not knowingly do so.

Unfortunately -- or fortunately if you're happy the government effectively flushed millions of dollars down the drain and may want a Round 2 -- the jury's indecision on Bonds' perjury counts means we simply can't rule out the possibility Bonds was telling the truth. Hey, everyone knows that Bonds took steroids, that's not the issue. The issue is Bonds' claim he had no idea what he was taking even though his home run output doubled, his hat size exploded and... um, well, there was "shrinkage" in a certain area of his body as his ex-mistress testified.

As long as it's possible Bonds was telling the truth, his Hall of Fame case still stands -- and could even be bolstered by the news out of court. On one hand, you will have voters believing Bonds was a Hall of Famer even without steroids. On the other hand, you can add in those who feel that it's impossible to discern who juiced, so why not treat the era as a whole and vote for whoever belongs, period? (Hey -- who knows who took amphetamines or not in the '70s or drugs in the '80s?)

And on this mysterious third hand humans don't have, should Bonds be penalized his chance at immortality because he didn't know he was taking steroids? That's the can of worms that we've opened here, and you can bet that there will be voters who vote for Bonds based on his effective acquittal of these charges. Even if the federal government decides to hold another trial, between the indecisiveness of the first jury and the bangup job that Bonds' defense lawyers did, nothing can be assumed anymore. And for that reason, you can bet Bonds will linger on the Hall of Fame ballot for a long time, and with enough time, it's completely feasible to see Bonds enter the Hall, especially as voter turnover happens and moves to the younger contingent, a group that appears more willing to consider the case of tainted stars.

Yes, it's bordering on ludicrous to assume that Bonds didn't know what he was ingesting. If trainer Greg Anderson wasn't so adamant about refusing to testify, he would likely provide all the evidence needed to put Bonds behind bars. And yet... since he does not, we can't assume that such evidence exists. Remember words like "innocent until proven guilty" and "preponderance of doubt" that you may have learned way back in junior high? Yeah, well, that still applies. And right now, Bonds continues to stand innocent of the charges that could have slammed the door rather emphatically on the steroid era. (Well, until Roger Clemens' own perjury case comes along in the summer, but that would have just been a sordid epilogue.)

Instead, we're left to sift through the mess. Again.

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Category: MLB
Comments
stadms
Since: Apr 13, 2011
Posted on: April 14, 2011 8:06 pm
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stadms
Since: Apr 13, 2011
Posted on: April 14, 2011 4:35 pm
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stadms
Since: Apr 13, 2011
Posted on: April 14, 2011 4:31 pm
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stadms
Since: Apr 13, 2011
Posted on: April 14, 2011 4:29 pm
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stadms
Since: Apr 13, 2011
Posted on: April 14, 2011 4:28 pm
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Since: Sep 19, 2006
Posted on: April 14, 2011 4:09 pm
 

What does guilty verdict mean for Barry Bonds?

stadms - You keep posting the same stupid SHOUTING message again and again and again and again.    Please SHUT UP !!!

BARRY BONDS IS THE GREATEST OF ALL TIME PERIOD!! 7 MVPs WITH FOUR IN A ROW.. 3 BATTING TITLES 15 GOLD GLOVES MOST HRS MOST WALKS PITCHES ARE VERY SCARE OF HIM ONLY PLAYER WITH 500HRS AND 500 STOLEN BASES GET OVER IT BEST EVER STEROIDS OR NO STEROIDS



Since: Sep 19, 2006
Posted on: April 14, 2011 4:00 pm
 

What does guilty verdict mean for Barry Bonds?




Since: Aug 29, 2006
Posted on: April 14, 2011 3:22 pm
 

What does guilty verdict mean for Barry Bonds?

I agree for the most part. I didnt have a problem with him taking steroids since there was no rule aginst it at the time. When the made the rule he got off them, he couldnt play every day, he was getting hurt, ext. Since this happened he must have known he was taking them. So he is a LIAR, i wouldnd put him in the hall on the fact that he didnt tell the truth. Put him in you have to put in McGwire atleast he said he was taking andro. Put one in put them all in. Bonds is the lowest scum on earth, Bet his daddy has already turned he back on him, would like to see what he would have to say if he was still alive.



Since: May 7, 2007
Posted on: April 14, 2011 3:00 pm
 

What does guilty verdict mean for Barry Bonds?

Look. One of the perjury counts came back with an 11-1 for conviction. No one I know who follows baseball believes Bonds is/was telling the truth about his PED use. No one. To imply he might be telling the truth is wishful thinking at best. As of right now, he's a convicted felon. Will that stand? Who knows. Money can buy a lot of, "justice," in America so maybe Bonds will walk away free and clear. Now that would be a tragedy for baseball, especially for the men whose records he obliterated while juicing and sending broken bat line drives 400'. And that would be the men who played pre Juice Ball era.



Since: Apr 9, 2008
Posted on: April 14, 2011 2:21 pm
 

Bonds: No Greater Fraud in Sports History

Anyone who has bothered to read Game of Shadows, and who doesn't have his head completely up his a**, already knows that Barry Bonds was a prolific, long-time user of sterioids and PEDs.  Period.  End of story. Just because prosecutors weren't able to convince a few holdout (well-paid?) jurors with names like "Nyeisha" that her hero was a fraud and a liar doesn't change what the man did, as exhaustively documented in Game of Shadows, and as any intelligent observer could see by his frightening body changes and his historically warped stats.  We KNOW, Barry.  We KNOW.  Now go away.  Please. Just. Go. Away.  And take your sycophants, slobbering fans, and gullible stooge sportswriters with you.


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