The Wednesday Show Prep

posted by Steve Bortstein -

Let's just get the numbers and the facts out of the way here.... 

Barry Bonds is -- without doubt -- the most celebrated and accomplished candidate on the Hall of Fame ballot. This is without debate and cannot be argued. 

Bonds, in his more than 20-year career, leads MLB in home runs (762) and walks (2558). He is a 14-time All-Star, an 8-time Gold Glove winner and ranks second only to Pete Rose and Hank Aaron in batting categories like extra-base hits and times on base.

Sabermetric stat geeks will point out a 1.051 career rating in something called OPS, which stands for on-base plus slugging. I don't have a Pythagorean Theorem chart in front of me to explain how it works, but the rating places Bonds in the same category as Babe Ruth, Ted Williams and Lou Gehrig.

So, we're all in agreement here, right? Bonds was pretty extraordinary.

Bonds is also perhaps one of the most controversial ever to play the game. By far the best position player of his generation and arguably the best hitter in baseball history, he also carries with him an enormous burden. And the only person responsible for that added weight is himself.

The Baseball Hall of Fame will announce election results later today. It is expected that Chipper Jones and Trevor Hoffman will receive more than the required 75 percent of the vote for induction. Names like Vladimir Guerrero, Edgar Martinez and Jim Thome are also potential inductees, as is Bonds, whose name once again appears on the ballot despite repeated allegations of PED use. This is Bonds’ sixth appearance on the ballot and support has grown incrementally over the past three years.

I suppose that's no surprise. People tend to be more forgiving as time passes, and what once bothered, annoyed or disappointed us in the past can sometimes be forgotten, or at the very least forgiven.

I'm not going to chastise those voters who choose to give Bonds a free pass to the Hall. I will suggest however, that anyone who does choose to induct Bonds would probably need to turn in whatever morality card they want to play in the future when telling others about the mistakes of their past.

I can't go back in time and erase the decisions made by voters who elected other people for cheating on the game. As much as I would like to protest those decisions, that is simply a fruitless endeavor which will never see a change to those actions.

Bonds, though never formally convicted of a crime against baseball (for lack of a better term) will always be seen as a cheater in my eyes. Thus, I can never support his induction and I will always hold those people accountable for their decision to turn a blind eye to what is so blatantly obvious. 

I don't have a vote in the process, but if I did, my choices would be:
Chipper Jones
Jim Thome
Trevor Hoffmann
Edgar Martinez

Last night was a historic one for LeBron James but another loss for the Cleveland Cavaliers. James became just the seventh player in league history to reach 30,000 career points, but the Cavs lost on the road 114-102 to San Antonio. The Cavaliers have lost 7 of their last 10 games. James becomes the youngest player to reach the 30,000 point mark.

Hours before last night's game against the Spurs, James posted a letter, presumably written by a young LeBron to his older self, congratulating the future Hall of Famer for his accomplishments. 

The letter, which was attached to a photo of himself in his high school basketball jersey, reads like this:

Wanna be one of the first to Congratulate you on this accomplishment/achievement tonight that you’ll reach! Only a handful has reach/seen it too and while I know it’s never been a goal of yours from the beginning try (please try) to take a moment for yourself on how you’ve done it! The House you’re about to be apart of has only 6 seats in it (as of now) but 1 more will be added and you should be very proud and honored to be invited inside. There’s so many people to thank who has help this even become possible(so thank them all) and when u finally get your moment (alone) to yourself smile, look up to the higher skies and say THANK YOU! So with that said, Congrats again Young King! 1 Love! #striveforgreatness🚀#thekidfromakron👑

I can't really call this out too cynically. I think there's a little bit of nostalgia to all of us where we'd like to go back in time, taking what we know after years of work and dedication and remind ourselves of where we were and what we wanted to be when we grew up.

The rest of us just don't do that in front of 1.3 million followers.

Maybe, perhaps one day I'll post a letter from my old self to my current self.

Granted, my accomplishments and my successes pale in comparison, but sometimes we all deserve a moment busting our own arm to pat ourselves on the back.

In Montgomery, Alabama an electrical fire caused a 24-hour Taco Bell to burn down. Students Russell Dowis and Katie James jokingly created a Facebook vigil event to honor the closed Taco Bell and people showed up. Here’s a clip of the news story.

Some of the notable quotes from the vigil.

"I feel like I lost a family member."

"I hope we can get some closure tonight and move on to the next cause. We're here supporting Taco Bell tonight."

One woman was saddened because the fire, which destroyed the Taco Bell location on Zelda Road, meant she's have to drive "all the way out to Perry Hill" to get some more of the deliciousness which can only be savored in another Grilled Stuffed Burrito.

So I did a little research.... because of course I did.

The now-shuttered Taco Bell location on Zelda Road, according to Google Maps, appears to be between 3 to 6 miles from the Perry Hill location. 

I can only imagine the suffering.

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