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Bonds is Marlins biggest addition of the offseason

By: Corey Parkinson

Barry Bonds

What happens when your team brings in the Home Run King as a part of your staff? The Miami Marlins are about to provide an answer to that exact question. Barry Bonds, the all-time Home Run leader in history has just been signed as the hitting coach of the Marlins. Bonds who many consider one of the greatest hitters of all time and undeniably the greatest power hitter since Babe Ruth has finally ended his self-imposed exile from MLB. Some feel Bonds’ career is forever tainted because of his connection to performance enhancing drugs, but before the presumed steroids and the great season of 73 home runs, even before the famous 25 of the San Francisco Giants, he played for Pittsburgh and had a swing so fluid and natural you always knew he was going to be great.

But exactly what knowledge can Bonds provide to the younger generation of ballplayers? For starters Bonds’ bat speed which was considered one of the fastest ever. Miami finished 29th out of 30 teams in home runs. Bonds’ can instruct players such as Giancarlo Stanton and Marcell Ozuna how to increase their approach so that their bat speed can improve. Not to mention, he will be instructing one of the greatest hitters of all time Ichiro which could help bring his totals up since he has not played up to his standards since leaving Seattle.

Another aspect of the game that made Bonds so great was his ability to take as well as induce walks. Miami as a team finished last in baseball in walks. Although they were sixth in strikeouts, they were not nearly as patient at the plate. Granted they finished in the top ten in overall batting average but the team is full of young hitters who are anxious at the plate to prove themselves. Bonds can teach these players to relax pick their pitches and swing when necessary.

It is also interesting that the Marlins, a team struggling to bring in revenue are willing to invite the circus that will certainly follow an enigmatic figure like Bonds. Whether actually caught or not, Bonds is one of the faces of the “Steroid Era” alongside Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa. And for a team based in the city where one of the biggest steroid busts in the history of sports adds another interesting aspect to this saga. Another issue when it comes to Bonds was his distaste for the media. Granted, he may not be talking to the media much as he is a hitting coach, but one needs to remember that Bonds was very disliked for his arrogant and cocky approach to handling the media especially during the time he was being linked to BALCO.

Jeffrey Loria, owner of the Marlins, has to be fully aware of the hire and what may come. At the same time, he also to be aware of the potential that may follow as well. Bonds is without question one of the game’s most talented hitters and there may be aspects that are just given and unteachable. But, things such as adjusting bat speed and how to approach the plate are things that he may be able to bestow on the younger talents such as Giancarlo Stanton. Bonds did not become as great as he is over night, he did not always average 150 walks a season. And those little tidbits and insights that only he knows, and only he can give.

Whether or not, the advice help will be decided next season, but just the mere presence of the Home Run King has got to be an incredible motivator in itself for the team as a whole. He is not there to play and that is the thing that needs to be remembered. Bonds at the plate was one of the most feared hitters in history. It only seems fitting that he now be able to share his methods and expertise to the younger generation of players. And the Marlins are in desperate need to not only fill the seats in the ballpark but to also put up the offensive numbers to make them competitors in the standings. With Bonds on the staff there’s a possibility to do both. It’s a win-win.

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Corey Parkinson

Staff Writer
Corey grew up a sports fanatic and an athlete. A baseball player up until he was 18, his passion and love for the game has remained unchanged. From the time he was five if it involved a ball that you threw or kicked, Corey was all in. His passion for journalism began at the age of 10 when he wrote a play about a World Series involving the Seattle Mariners and The New York Mets. As a Sports Media and Marketing major currently at Full Sail University, Corey is working his way to becoming an MLB beat writer. Writing for SoMuchSports.com has given him the platform to share his knowledge and passion for sports and primarily his undying love for baseball.

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