There were a lot of things going through my mind as I watched Barry Bonds shatter the all time home run record with a 435 foot blast into the right center field seats.

Barry Bonds
It was the end of an intense waiting game with the national media following Bonds every move and as interest peaked, so did the controversy. With the commissioner of Baseball tagging along for a few of the games a debate even arouse over whether or not the commissioner was obligated to be in attendance. Of course that debate will rage on in baseball purists’ minds and draw scoffs by those who frankly don’t give a damn!

The crux of the big brouhaha is the alleged steroid use by Bonds and will that cheapen the feat of smashing the record? When you look at it, the steroid era in Baseball supposedly began in mid 1990, and has caused Baseball to take serious steps to eradicate it. Bonds name is among the 50 or so players mentioned. So how do you look at it? One school of thought is that the Baseball Club Owners clearly were aware of steroid use. After the 1994 Baseball strike Baseball needed fans back and the best way was to start hitting lots of home runs.

Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa both obliged and were dogged about their use of supplements. I tend to believe the owners knew, with today’s medical knowledge of pro ball players it would be hard for trainers and owners not to at least suspect something. But hey, sold out ball parks can make a lot of owners look the other way.

So then should Bond be singled out as the only villain? Perhaps his demeanor is abrasive and standoffish, but he certainly wasn’t the only fish in the tank getting extra kick in his diet. But we will never really know who did what, and who knew, the subject is too deep, but I think maybe we ought to give Bonds a little credit for spending 22 years in the big leagues and finally breaking the most sought after record in modern sports.
Hank Aaron
I watched as he tied the record in San Diego and carried his elated 17 year old son towards the dugout in his arms! I watched as he walked over to his two daughters and wife in San Francisco and give them big hugs and kisses, and I watched as he raised his eyes and hands towards Heaven and thanked his late Father.

Maybe it’s just me but I was moved by the emotion showed by this villain and witnessed the total love and adulation from the fans in San Francisco for their native son as he returned home at last to put an end to the chase.

I wasn’t sad Bonds broke Hank Aarons record; my only sadness came when I thought of our service people overseas in horrible situations and how much they would have loved to be at the ball park cheering with the rest of the fans as the ball rocketed skyward and outa there!!!

To reach Rick Schultze email — yarick@pioneer.net

Added 09 August, 2007 by Rick


Rick Schultze

A few years ago at a writers conference held in the central Oregon coast town of Yachats, where I live, I listened to the late Ken Kesey, a frequent visitor to the area, tell a writer that this could be a hard place to write. “If you think you can sit there staring at the ocean for inspiration you’re wrong, it’s not out there, it’s in your head!” He was right; it is beautiful here in Lincoln County, the kind of beauty that makes concentrating on anything else tough and since hearing that insight, I’ve written at a desk facing a wall, no windows opening onto a ocean view, although I have one, but it’s worked. I’ve done, and do, different kinds of writing. As a freelance writer I’ve been a observational columnist, a humor columnist, a book and music reviewer for newspapers, magazines, and online. However, as a creative writer, my heart belongs to fiction. In that genre I do short stories, road adventure stories, musical adventure tales, and in current production, are three small novels. So really the purpose of this web site is to give you a glance of some of the things I’ve done, a preview of what’s coming, and hopefully, a view of what it’s like to be a writer living in a small town on the Oregon coast!