This week, MLB voters elected David Ortiz into the Hall-of-Fame in his first year of eligibility.
Ortiz was an integral part of three World Series winning Boston Red Sox teams. Ortiz also logged ten All-Star appearances and collected seven Silver Sluggers. He owns a .947 postseason OPS along with the 2013 World Series MVP award.
Make no mistake, Ortiz belongs in Cooperstown.
So does Barry Bonds.
In previous elections, HOF voters drew a line in the sand. No player with strong ties to the steroid era is worthy of election to Cooperstown. That rule seemed to bend with the inclusion of Ortiz and the exclusion of Bonds.
Seemingly, Ortiz’s popularity and relationships with the media paved his road to Cooperstown. To reiterate, he should be there, but one can’t ignore an obvious double standard.
Ortiz was, and still is, adored by the baseball media. Bonds is reviled.
It was Bonds’ final year of regular eligibility and now, the slugger, whether you like him or not, can only be appointed to the HOF by the veteran committee. Based upon voting history, it’s not likely to happen.
Simply put, Bonds is an integral part of baseball history. He owns the career home run record and a record seven league MVPs. Bonds was the most feared hitter in baseball for more than a decade.
Put him in with an asterisk. Put him in as a Pittsburgh Pirate. This isn’t brushing aside his PED use. It’s including one of the seminal figures of the last 40 years of baseball into baseball’s greatest museum.
If voters are okay with enshrining Ortiz, who also has a questionable past with PEDs, then the holy guardians of baseball lore should also bring Bonds into the fold.
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