Alex Pavlovic of the San Jose Mercury News provides the details:
Barry Bonds is scheduled to return to the organization in March, this newspaper has learned, serving as a special instructor for the Giants' hitters. Bonds has long wanted to take on a more active role with the organization, but the two sides have not been connected in an official capacity since 2007, Bonds' last season in Major League Baseball.
Manager Bruce Bochy explained the role Bonds will serve to Pavlovic:
"He's part of what we'll do here. He's going to be part of the group of instructors, like (Will) Clark, (J.T.) Snow or (Jeff) Kent. He's going to be like the other guys and help where he can."
Bochy also discussed the controversy that Bonds' presence might bring with the San Francisco Chronicle's Henry Schulman:
You understand there will be a lot of attention with Barry coming back, his first time coming back since he stopped playing. Our goal is not to let it be a distraction. He’s here to help the hitters. He might talk to you guys about things, but that’s not going to take away from what we’re doing.
Andrew Baggarly of CSN Bay Area had more on Bonds' role:
Nice scoop by @AlexPavlovic on Bonds being a spring instructor. I'm told it's his idea, & he won't be paid outside of per diem/travel costs.— Andrew Baggarly (@CSNBaggs) February 22, 2014
#SFGiants & Bonds also aren't beginning 10-year personal services contract that was part of his last extension. This is just a trial balloon— Andrew Baggarly (@CSNBaggs) February 22, 2014
Bonds finished his career as baseball's all-time leader in home runs with 762, seven more than Hank Aaron. He also finished with the most walks in league history, an impressive .298 batting average and a .444 on-base percentage.
Most impressively, he won seven National League Most Valuable Player awards throughout his time with the Giants and Pittsburgh Pirates.
It is clear he has plenty of knowledge that he can impart on the young squad, especially considering the team finished 21st in total runs and 29th in home runs in the MLB last season.
On the other hand, Bonds' career was filled with controversy surrounding his use of performance-enhancing drugs. For this reason, he has not been voted into the Hall of Fame in two attempts and has even lost votes in the most recent election, according to Mike Oz of Yahoo Sports.
This certainly creates some risk for the Giants to associate with their fallen star.
Still, the situation seems to be a positive one, as Bonds will try to do anything he can to help his former team. This addition of knowledge could be enough to help the club get back to the playoffs after a disappointing 76-86 season.
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