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Bonds fired, but not likely finished

By: Corey Parkinson

While Barry Bonds was fired less than a year after being hired, the Miami Marlins had improved their batting average, home runs and runs scored in 2016 compared to 2015.

While Barry Bonds was fired less than a year after being hired, the Miami Marlins had improved their batting average, home runs and runs scored in 2016 compared to 2015.

Back in December of last year the Miami Marlins took a gamble on hiring the controversial home run king, Barry Bonds, to their staff as a hitting coach. Bonds, who is undoubtedly one of the greatest hitters in baseball history, had not been involved in the sport since his not so pleasant farewell season of 2007. The biggest question commonly asked after the hiring was how would the young players on the Marlins respond to the instruction of one of baseball’s controversial players. Unfortunately, that experiment is over after only one season. Not even a year after his hire, Bonds was fired.

Bonds’ knowledge of the game has been well documented and his ability to share tips with his teammates has been widely discussed as well. But never to the extent of actually instructing players. Under Bonds the Marlins improved in three major categories: batting average at .263, runs at 655 and home runs at 128. Players such as Martin Prado, Giancarlo Stanton truly embraced the knowledge being offered by Bonds. Stanton, became noticeably more patient at the plate, although his season was plagued by injuries again.

One reason cited for Bonds early termination was his inability to adjust to the demands of coaching. Marlins manager Don Mattingly was quoted as complaining of how Bonds was not putting in required time that many staff members put in before and after games. As the Marlins season slipped away and they fell out of contention so did Bonds motivation and focus. But what now?

While Bonds’ ego may have played a role in his dismissal, he did provide results improving the Marlins hitting in three categories. Bonds is knowledgeable. He is also one of the greatest hitter’s ever and a person who has always commanded respect.

The Diamondbacks, Braves, and the Rockies are all in search of new managers and although Bonds doesn’t have an extensive managerial record, it is not that farfetched to think of Bonds when discussing candidates for managerial openings. His extensive knowledge of hitting as well as the sport in general is without question some of the greatest. The stigma of players from suspected of steroid use during their playing career has worn off. Mark McGwire who admitted to steroid use who had long been the hitting coach of the Los Angeles Dodgers, was hired this year as a bench coach of the San Diego Padres and is believed to be a future candidate for a managerial job. Jason Giambi, another steroid user, has been talked about in many circles as a top prospect for open manager positions. So the idea of Bonds becoming a manager for a team some time down the road is very plausible.

A team will take a chance on Barry Bonds at some point. He has proven that he can positively contribute to a team. His ability expands beyond what he can do at the plate and there will be plenty of openings for him to show just how much knowledge is truly there but for now it’s wait and see will he be a hitting coach for another team or is it possible he gets an even better chance as bench coach or even manager.

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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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