The Barry Bonds case is over. Bonds, as we speak, is being sentenced. The penalty: 30 days of house arrest, two years of probation and 250 hours of community service. This, by the way, is what the probation office recommended. Prosecutors were seeking a 15 month jail term.Prosecutors spent 10 years and millions of dollars on this base. Bonds was not convicted of perjury or of using steroids. I defy anyone to explain to me what he did wrong. He did not obstruct anyone being prosecuted. At worst, he gave an incomplete answer to a question. If anyone was at fault, it was the prosecutor for not asking a followup question at the grand jury hearing.
In handing out her sentence, the judge observed that she agreed with the jury that Bonds tried to obstruct justice. Just that he failed. She noted that he did not threaten witnesses, for example. When I first read his grand jury testimony three and a half years ago I observed the same thing. You can tell Barry wanted to perjure himself. He just was pretty damn bad at it.
The judge also noted that the sentence took into account that Bonds has a strong record of philanthropy, much of which is unpublicized. Weighing against that, I presume, is that he is a lousy stinkin’ cheater who robbed some sportswriters of their childhood memories.
A lot of people hate Bonds, and today they will be cheering that Bonds is disgraced. I am glad that he "robbed some sportswriters of their childhood memories." He was a great baseball player. I hope that he convinces the appeals court that it was not a crime for him to have given an incomplete answer to the grand jury.