August 18th, 2013 at 8:03 AM ^

He does unless you want to put your head in the sand.  Bonds was an incredible hitter back when he was a skinny kid with nary a drug in him.  Moreover, no one will ever convince me that the drugs helped him with hand eye coordination and his ability to draw (unintentional) walks.  I also doubt that it helped with his incredible bat speed.  

I'm not particularly a Bond fan (I never liked his personality) and I certainly don't like the use of steroids.  However, if you want to be honest you can't ignore Bonds' incredible talent and success before drugs and the fact that the drugs don't explain everything after.  The use of steroids in baseball is a plague and I don't mind them cracking down, but the cheating quotiant as it applies to that sport is (I think) a lot less than in pure endurance sports like bike racing.

Miggy is amazing, btw.  I just don't care for the moralizing about Bonds anymore than I have the moralizing about Pete Rose.


August 18th, 2013 at 12:26 PM ^

Stereoids improve your strength. If you can crank more home runs, as juiced-up Bonds did, then arguably that has made you a better hitter. But there are more kinds of hits than just home runs. Bonds was a great hitter before stereoids because he could consistently get singles and get on base. And the difference between line drives and home runs is more about power than it is about hand-eye coordination. The stereoids gave him that power, but the hand-eye coordination needed to be a great hitter is something he always had. Juicing might help your bat speed, but it's not going to help your reflexes.


August 18th, 2013 at 8:01 PM ^

And a lot of Barry's HR's that weren't hit on the screws but still went out because of his roided up strength very well could have been just long fly ball outs if he wasn't juicing. It's impossible to say exactly what kind of numbers he would have put up if he were clean, but I'll take Miggy any day. Last I checked, Bonds never got the triple crown.


August 18th, 2013 at 9:58 AM ^

I think his point was Cabrera's "combination" of average and power. Bonds didn't have that combination until he began taking steroids. Prior to that, yes, he was a very good hitter - for average. He had no power, though.


August 18th, 2013 at 11:13 AM ^

Wow.  I didn't remember him having those types of numbers early in his career.  +1 Informative to you, sir.  

I really think it makes it all the more tragic that he resorted to steroids and HGH.  Given the natural power growth that players experience as they reach their early thirties, he could have been remembered as a great (non-steroid) player that was an asshole.  Instead, he'll be remembered as a steroid and HGH fueled freak of his former self that was an asshole.  


August 19th, 2013 at 7:25 AM ^

Yes, it was a tragedy.  That was the only point I was trying to make.  Bonds would have been quite amazing without the drugs.  I agree he'd have had fewer HRs and possibly a lower average, but overall he had no reason to bulk up.  Of course, the tragedy was created by Bonds himself and he is responsible for it.


August 18th, 2013 at 12:27 PM ^

Bonds was a terrific player.  Objectively, one thing he had all over Miggy (and everyone else) is the best eye at the plate I've ever seen.  He had plenty of power pre-roids as well.  But, again objectively, Miggy is well ahead of him at age 30 when it comes to driving in runs and making solid contact at the plate (cross ref BA and RBI numbers. His BA is similar to what I remember from Carew, Brett et al who were terrific line drive hitters).  Even in Barry's record setting HR year, he drove in 137 (I think...somewhere around that.  Regardless, with 73 homers, you'd think it'd be higher).  Subjectively, I can't get around the steroids question.  Obviously, they blew up his power numbers (from 35-ish a year to 70) and they probably helped him with nagging injuries.  Miggy is playing on one leg and a strained abdomen and still ungodly.  Would Barry have been able to be as consistent over time without a little helper? So, I'll stand by my original thought that Miggy is the best I've seen as the total package over a long period of time.


August 18th, 2013 at 1:16 PM ^

of the last 3 years+ of his career with a bad knee, still put up great numbers.


As far as I'm concerned Barry and Miggy are the best hitters I've seen in this game.  Really the only thing Barry had  over Miggy was speed.  Barry was a 40-40 guy, Miggy will never get that.


August 18th, 2013 at 2:23 AM ^

Boggs, Gwynn - avid baseball fan from the late 70s to the present...Yeah, Cabrera is that good.

I Have loved the Tigers since before I can remember and I have always been jealous of teams that have one of those guys, and now we have one.  As Ira says on WTKA, Tigers fans, enjoy as much of this as you can because it's a once in a lifetime thing.


August 17th, 2013 at 11:17 PM ^

Ugh I turned the game off to watch the UFC. AT least they won. As said before it was stupid how Leyland and catcher were thrown out. Stupid umps don't know shit


August 17th, 2013 at 11:19 PM ^

I am to the point where I expect it and end up surprised and disappointed when it doesn't happen. It almost seems like he can hit a HR whenever he needs to.


August 18th, 2013 at 12:58 AM ^

This thread got me thinking about wins above replacement. That is a very flawed statistic with far too much weight on stolen bases. I love station to station baseball but c'mon, when 3 guys are ahead of Miguel it's broke. Trout, McCutcheon and that other kid are all fine players but every walk off hit should be worth one win on WAR or it doesn't make sense.


August 18th, 2013 at 10:13 AM ^

If every walk off hit was worth one win on WAR, there would a lot more than just 3 guys ahead of Miguel in WAR.

But yes, it does seem as though WAR underappreciates how important hitting is to baseball. It is a stat that kind of overreacted to the idea that people ignore the other aspects of the game (fielding, base-running, etc.), and then went and overvalued those other aspects.