Bud Selig has a new book out, and the former MLB commissioner was no fan of the most famous athlete in the sport during his tenure.
“Summer of 2007 was unpleasant for me, and when I look back, that’s putting it mildly,” Selig recounts in “For The Good of The Game,” according to excerpts acquired by. “It was one of the few times in my life I wasn’t excited about going to ballparks, and if you know me that’s all you need to know.”
In that passage, Selig is referring to Barry Bonds, who broke Hank Aaron’s all-time home run record in 2007 with the 756th dinger of his decorated career. Bonds ultimately finished with 762 homers, which currently stands as the MLB record.
In the book, Selig states that the San Francisco Giants slugger “simply wasn’t likable” compared to Aaron, and that he encountered “misery” while traveling around to watch Bonds’ pursuit of the record.
“While I felt a responsibility to be on hand for Bonds’ moment, I’ll admit I had a fantasy that I’d be spared when I went to Cooperstown to see (Cal) Ripken and (Tony) Gwynn be inducted into the Hall of Fame,” Selig says in the book. “Nobody would have blamed me for being there rather than on the road with Barry. But I received no reprieve, so I trudged on.”
Selig served as MLB commissioner from 1998-2015, which included the height of baseball’s steroid era. He was succeeded by current league commissioner Rob Manfred and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2017. Selig currently holds the position of Commissioner Emeritus of Baseball.
Bonds, who also holds the record for single-season home runs, along with the career records for walks and intentional walks, has not been inducted into the Hall of Fame due largely to widespread suspicions of steroid use. The seven-time MVP and 14-time All-Star missed out this past winter while receiving 59.1 percent of the vote from the Baseball Writers’ Association of America in his seventh year on the ballot. Players require 75 percent of the vote to be inducted.
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