Former San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds will be back with the team during spring training. According to an exclusive report by the San Jose Mercury News on Feb. 23, Bonds is set to return to the Giants as a special instructor for the team’s younger hitters.
As Barry Bonds has not had any connection to the team since 2007, his last year with the team, the organization doesn’t see his return as a distraction. Despite allegations connected with performance-enhancing drugs during and after his playing career along with a perjury trail and a felony conviction for obstruction of justice, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said he has no concerns about Bonds being around the team.
“He’s part of what we’ll do here. He’s going to be part of the group of instructors, like (Will) Clark, (J.T.) Snow or (Jeff) Kent. He’s going to be like the other guys and help where he can.”
Bonds has always wanted to return to the team in some capacity and the communication has been there since 2012. Starting on March 9, he will have the opportunity to regain that connection. According to the team, he deserves the same chance as other players who have returned.
“Collectively within the organization, we felt that given Barry’s desire to continue to contribute to the Giants, we should be open-minded about giving him the same invite that we have given to other players in the past,” said Giants CEO and President Larry Baer.
Although some may put an asterisk next to his name, Bonds does hold major league records for home runs in a season (73) and career (762). On the field he was one of the most feared hitters during his era. He not only hit for power, he also hit for average and was a stolen base threat during his younger years. As far as his experience, he has a lot to offer to the younger players, which is the reason the Giants feel he can make a difference.
Barry Bonds will spend a week with the team (March 9-17) and if things go well he can be a welcomed to spring training every spring.
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