I have to admit that I have not really been following the Bonds steroid story too closely. I happened to catch homerun number 713 last night and I’m generally aware of the situation with the book’s allegations and the investigation by the commissioner of baseball.
My gut reaction is if he cheated, and it can be proven, he should be banned from baseball forever. However, the “proven he cheated” part is what worries me. Personally, I expect Bud Selig will suspend Bonds before he can break the homerun record. Passing Ruth will probably happen, but remember it’s not really a record.
The problem really becomes complicated when you try and retroactively attack players like McGwire, Sosa and the like over steroid issues. Those two, for example, are out of baseball and have no real impact on the game as it stands today. Back in the day, they broke records, but there were few allegations of them cheating other than the perfectly legal drugs McGwire was using and the corked bat that Sosa used to spectacular fashion. Their records stand unless you can prove beyond the shadow of a doubt that they cheated. I don’t think you can go back and do that.
Bonds is still playing and consequently is the poster child for illegal steroid abuse. It certainly doesn’t help that he’s a massive, unrepentant asshole. He will get abuse for the rest of his career and probably for the rest of his life.
I tend to believe that he did use steroids and if it can be proven beyond the shadow of a doubt, then he should be banned from baseball and all his records be ignored. Immediately following, he will become a pariah, just like Pete Rose. Time will tell if Rose ever makes it into the Hall of Fame (my guess is not until after his death) and time will tell regarding Bonds.
Unless, of course, he goes on some sort of ‘roid rage.