care for an asterisk?
September 18, 2007
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I read today that fashion designer Marc Ecko was the winning bidder in the auction for Barry Bonds’ record-breaking 756th home run baseball. Instead of just putting in a display class to sit on a shelf somewhere, he has decided to milk it for all the publicity it’s worth (all $752,467 worth) and allow the public to vote on the fate of the (infamous) ball. By visiting this website, people can choose one of three options for the ball. Send it to the Hall of Fame, brand an asterisk in it (due to Bonds’ questionable enhancement drug use) before sending it to the Hall, or to put it in a rocket and send it out of orbit.
As you can probably guess from the picture, I went with the 2nd option. I feel the ball does belong in the Hall of Fame, and the marking of it with an asterisk will force the Hall & baseball in general to acknowledge the steroid scandal that marked this era in the game, so that fans for generations to come will be aware of this moment in the long storied history of the game. While the era of performance enhancing drugs is one of the darker moments in the game’s history, it needs to be acknowledged and remembered just like the Black Sox scandal of many years ago.