Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Ugh still can't put a headline up for some reason.

Stammerin' Hank

A corollary to Bonds' quest to unseat Aaron as HR king is Aaron's reaction to the whole circus. Aaron has already said that he will not be present when (not if) Bonds breaks the record and Aaron is also conspicuously absent from this week's All-Star festivities. Aaron's behavior is doing more to tarnish his legacy than Bonds will do to it by passing his record. Contrary to his perception, when Bonds belts number 756, Hammerin' Hank doesn't instantly become irrelevant. Did people forget about Ruth's accomplishments after Maris hit 61* or after Aaron surpassed his all-time HR record? No. By taking such a bitter approach towards Bonds, Aaron is giving off the impression that the only thing in his life that matters is the record, and that just makes him look pathetic. Playing dime store psychologist, I believe that Aaron is holding onto to this record with the grip of Man Hands (Seinfeld reference for the unindoctrinated) because he feels slighted by baseball historians and fans who laud Mays, Mantle, Dimaggio, Williams, and even Banks before mentioning Aaron. The record forces Aaron into the discussion, but maybe at the same time the record takes away from his accomplishments. By taking such a rigid stance on Bonds and the record, Aaron shines so much attention on his record that he actually obscures his other career accomplishments. Hank, you weren't Dave Kingman, so stop acting like home runs are the be all and end all.

Aaron was a fantastic ballplayer and has been a great ambassador for the game, but by refusing to give Bonds any credit he looks like a crotchety old man who loves to tell you how great everything was 40 years ago and how everything today is for the birds. Records were made to be broken and you might not like the man breaking it or the suspect way that he did it, but he is going to do it so you can at least acknowledge his existence. Keep this in mind...no one likes angry old men. Why do you think nursing homes were invented?


Anonymous said...

**Aaron's behavior is doing more to tarnish his legacy than Bonds will do to it by passing his record.**

You have to be kidding. Aaron is showing more class than Bonds ever thought of. Instead of coming out and saying "Why should I acknowledge a cheating, liar taking over my record", Aaron is taking the gentleman's way out by saying it's because he's not the one important here.

Bonds, Selig, and many Giants fans could learn a lesson or two from Mr. Aaron.

Ghost of Carl Monday said...

Selig is the commissioner of baseball and, whether people who post anonymously or otherwise want to admit it or not, as THE representative of the MLB, he really should be there.

And while I think Aaron is being petty, I don't think that he's tarnishing the legacy or anything.

Anonymous said...

this writer is an idiot. bonds is a cheater and it has never been disputed. go write for the san jose mercury or something...they need more writers who impose no logic

Anonymous said...

I can't believe this awful post got mentioned on Deadspin. Like the first poster said, Hank Aaron is being the classiest individual in this whole charade.

Idiot New Yorkers.

Anonymous said...

Aaron has intentionally chosen to remain inconspicuous since his retirement and he seldom speaks out about current events in baseball. He has consistenly downplayed the importance of his home run record throughout his lifetime. Also, in light of the overt and hateful racism that was directed at him as he broke Babe Ruth's record, I dont think it's at all accurate to describe Aaron as "a crotchety old man who loves to tell you how great everything was 40 years ago".

Hammerin' Hank always conducted himself with class on the field and off, and he has earned the right to choose not to be in attendance for Bonds' record breaking homer. The thought that this will tarnish his legacy is absurd.

Not CliffX said...