Former Giants star Barry Bonds spoke with reporters Monday during his first appearance this season at San Francisco’s AT&T Park, and he revealed he has been speaking with Giants officials about the possibility of rejoining the organization, perhaps as a roving instructor.
Bonds, who said he was on hand Monday for a charity event for children, was affable and accommodating throughout his half-hour session with reporters, and several times he referred to himself as “a felon convicted of obstruction of justice,” according to Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. He continues to refuse to admit to steroid use.
Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of his wide-ranging interview session was that Bonds said he has spoken with Giants president and CEO Larry Baer about rejoining the club, perhaps “helping major-leaguers [and] minor-leaguers” in the Giants organization,” Bonds said, according to CSN Bay Area. “My expertise is baseball. If you believe that I can contribute and help the organization, then fine. If you don’t, fine. I’m just saying it’s out there.”
Bonds’ name will come up again this winter when his name appears for the first time on the Hall of Fame ballot. Several other players from the so-called Steroid Era — such as Roger Clemens and Sammy Sosa — also will be on the ballot.
Asked whether he expects to be voted into the Hall of Fame on the first ballot, the seven-time National League MVP and career home run leader said, “I have no idea. That’s up to the writers. I don’t worry about that stuff. I’ll be at home having a good time with my kids. Or hopefully here. Doing some stuff for other kids. That’ll take care of itself. I don’t need to worry about that stuff.”
“You guys know me. I don’t try to predict the future or analyze how other people are thinking or how it’s going to turn out. It would be very sad if it didn’t happen. That’s why I don’t need to comment on it. There’s really no need.”
The issue with Bonds, of course, is his suspected use of steroids and his obstruction of justice conviction in April 2011.
“I’m a convicted felon of obstruction of justice and that’s what I am,” he said. “I live with it. It will never go off your mind. You never forget those things. You move on [but] I’ll never forget it. I was never convicted of steroids.”
Bonds turns 48 on July 24, and he appears to be in excellent shape.
Bonds said he underwent surgery on his lower back and hip in the past five weeks and weighs between 212 and 215 pounds. “But I never weighed more than 238 when I was playing.” he said.
He said he spends his time these days watching “cycling, track and the Giants” on television.
“I’m following (Tim) Lincecum a lot,” Bonds said. “I hope Brian Wilson comes back strong (from Tommy John surgery), and I’m very proud of Matt Cain.”
But Bonds says he does not miss being part of the game.
“No,” he said, “I played a long time. I gave my life and my soul, my whole body on the baseball field, and I did it for 22 years. Whether you hated me or liked me, you were there. I always played better on the edge.”