My Eyes! It Burns, It Burns!!

We interrupt our midseason review (don’t forget to check out the pitching recap posted earlier today) to bring you what may in fact be the most horrifying thing you’ll ever see. Normally when readers bring something to my attention, I thank them for reading and sending something interesting my way. But not today, friends. Today we can all blame Cory F. for forwarding me this crime against humanity from Mark Kriegel at

To this point, Major League Baseball has seen some nice stories. The rise of Tampa Bay (never mind the recent slump) comes first to mind. Josh Hamilton, sober with 95 RBI at the break, is an inspiration. What’s more, fans can take heart in the fact that his teammate and fellow All-Star, Milton Bradley, has limited himself to just a single anger management issue. There’s also, as my father the purist likes to point out, “the continued resurgence of the most beautiful play in the game — the triple.”

Exactly. The truth is, it’s been a little boring this summer. The season has been lacking in debate. And isn’t that the whole point with baseball, to give you and your friends and your father something to argue about?

So admit it. You miss him.

I’m talking about Barry Bonds, of course

Mark Kriegel is bored that Josh Hamilton has turned his life around to be an inspiration for thousands. Mark Kriegel can barely keep his eyes awake now that Milton Bradley is only hitting fastballs and not teammates. Tampa Bay leading the AL East after 10 years of crapitude? Snooooze. No, Mark Kriegel wants a villain. So basically, he’d be better off watching Batman movies rather than paying attention to what’s shaping up to be a very interesting MLB season.

And not only does Kriegel want Bonds back… he wants him on the Dodgers.

Still, there’s one best place for Bonds: the Los Angeles Dodgers. Now that would be fun. First, he’d be reunited with Jeff Kent. Plus, it would give St. Joe Torre a chance to really earn his money, and tell everybody how Barry just wants to win and winning is the only thing that matters to him at this stage of his career.

How great would that be? If Torre could get people to believe that Roger Clemens bled pinstripe blue, he shouldn’t have much of a problem gentling the perception of Bonds. Besides, once more, it makes baseball sense.

No. This wouldn’t be fun. Have you really not noticed all the BS floating around this team already? Between questions over front office politics, young players vs. old, and Bill Plaschke vs. everyone, this team’s already got enough issues without Barry Bonds. Now, I realize that the success of the Dodgers isn’t as important to Kriegel as being entertained, but he’s really coming off as the kind of guy who stands on the side of the highway and prays for car wrecks. For a moment, I was ready to write this article off as just All-Star Break fluff, but then he starts in on how it “makes baseball sense”:

Despite a $119 million payroll, the Dodgers rank 26th in runs scored. What’s more, they’re down to basically three outfielders — Matt Kemp, Andruw Jones and Andre Ethier. Oh, my bad. I forgot the 19 games played by the inestimable Delwyn Young.

I haven’t really talked about it much on the blog, but I’ve generally agreed with the idea that there’s some team that Barry Bonds could help this year. A team that’s close to the playoffs that could use an offensive boost; a team that has a hole to fill at LF or DH; a team that’s used to daily media pressure; a team that has a strong clubhouse. At the moment, I think the two obvious choices there are the Mets and Yankees, two teams with struggling offenses and huge holes in the OF corners, who play under the NYC media insanity every day.

But the Dodgers? No. First of all, there’s the fact that Bonds is probably hated in Los Angeles more than anywhere else, due in part to the longtime Dodgers/Giants rivalry and partly due to how much damage Bonds personally did to the Dodgers over the years.

Look, there’s no question the Dodgers need some help on offense, but other than that, they don’t fill my above requirements. They’ve already had clubhouse/front office issues they don’t need to add to, but more importantly, it doesn’t make sense from a baseball standpoint. Kriegel somehow forgets the existence of Juan Pierre (oh, how I envy you), who’s supposed to be back in two weeks. So say the Dodgers sign Bonds. What then? You put him in LF, Jones in CF and… Pierre in RF? With both Kemp and Ethier to the bench or traded? That might be the worst defensive outfield in the history of Major League Baseball. The possible improvement on offense is in no way worth what it would bring with it on defense.

If you want to talk about Bonds in LF, Kemp in CF, and Ethier in RF… well, maybe you’ve got something there. But we all know that would never happen, so it’s not even worth discussing.

And finally, I want to give you fair warning here. There’s another reason I discussed this article and it has nothing to do with anything that Mark Kriegel just wrote. There’s something else contained within…

… it’s truly awful.

You’ve been warned.

 It’s worse than you think.

Last chance!



- Mike Scioscia’s tragic illness msti-face.jpg