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Slusser On Barry Bonds Possibilities

We recently named Susan Slusser Rumor Royalty for the A's.  She is the team's beat writer for the San Francisco Chronicle.  As part of the feature she answered a few questions for us.

MLBTR: Could you see any team beside the A's signing Barry Bonds?  In your estimation, what's the most the A's would pay for a year of Bonds

Slusser: An insider told me at the winter meetings that two other teams besides the A's had asked about Bonds, so it's impossible to rule out. If he plays - and that seems to be a pretty big if -- Oakland has the best shot, but estimating a salary is really tough. If there's no other interest and Bonds really wants to play, considering all the issues that surround him, the price tag could be pretty cheap, say $5-$6 million. If there's more interest, it could go up. The A's did pay Mike Piazza $8 million last year.

Do the A's really want Bonds, though? There are good reasons to sign him, and equally solid reasons not to. They need to put fans in the seats after moving their most popular player, and they don't have much in the middle of the order right now. On the other hand, they might alienate much of their fan base with Bonds, and a team that is in "full bore'' rebuilding mode might not be looking to spend on a 43-year-old free agent with lots of legal problems and an iffy clubhouse reputation. There is no doubt it has been discussed internally, however.

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I'm wondering if Bonds' right arm armor would still be allowed if he switches to the American League. If not, then he has no value whatsoever. Tim, do you recall an article you linked early last season about Bonds' fancy arm brace? If you can find it, I'll be extremely grateful. It completely changed my opinion of the man. I never considered him a cheater before I read about his swing tool.

There was an article in Editor & Publisher that said that the brace gave Bonds an unfair advantage. But that article is no longer on the Web. There are a couple of articles that refer to that E&P article, including one at BP that says the brace maker claims that Bonds's arms have not changed in size: http://baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=6557

A's could sign Bonds then trade him mid season...

They have money, so they should go ahead and sign him. You know the stadium will be sold out, plus tons of TV ad revenue for every game leading up to every milestone he might reach: -He only needs 4 hits to reach 3000
-With 37 extra base hits, he could pass Hank Aaron for the most all-time.
He'd pass Rickey Henderson for #1 all-time in runs scored if he scores 68 runs--he scored 75 last year, so I don't think it's impossible.
-A stretch, but he could crack 800 homers if he has an amazing year. DHing might help him get the ABs to pull it off.

Anyway, my point is, why not?

Now if only Susan could write like this when she is reporting on the A's on a daily basis.

As far as "why not Bonds", because we're trying to rebuild, not pay some veteran to get a couple records that would mean nothing to the Athletics organization. The backlash from signing Bonds would be far worse then not signing him.

The key to rebuilding is to have a wealth of prospects but to also be able to put butts in the seats. Picking up bonds could lead to a successful rebuilding effort, especially if there is a discounted salary. And who knows, he may be great as a DH. I guaruntee that he will be way better than Mike Piazza and at least as good as Frank.

A's already have problems with attendance. I say pick up bonds!!!!

in regards to attendance it would bring in some people to bring in money during the rebuilding process. on the other hand with the baggage that bonds brings in and the negitive influence he brings also could be a bad idea for the youngsters.

How about back to the giants for another season. I am sure he would not make that team any worse than they already are. They gave Aaron Rowand a 5 year deal, give me a break. How desperate can you be. He is by no means a slugger. He had 27 homers last season hitting between Utley,Howard,Rollins,Burrell. He is not a gamebraker like the giants are paying him and need him to be. He is a complementery player, that is what he is. The giants really have a depressing lineup.

FineHam - Bonds needs 65 hits for 3000, not 4. He needs 4 rbi for 2000.

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