MY BARRY BONDS STORY
Future Hall of Famer and all-around awesome human being Randy Marsh hooked me up today with what is arguably the coolest bobblehead being given away this season. This one is from the Braves, commemorating “Sid Slid” from the 1992 NLCS game in which the Braves’ Sid Bream scored the winning run in Game 7. That’s Randy giving the “safe” call.
In the spring of 1991, I became a big-time Pirates fan (the Reds were always, #1, though) due entirely to meeting Barry Bonds in Bradenton, FL.
Barry was a neighbor to my great aunt and uncle during Spring Training (the Pirates trained in Bradenton). They shared the same hall in a condo complex there. Knowing that my dad, my grandpa and I were coming down to stay with them for a Spring Training visit in ’91, my aunt asked Barry if he’d stop by and say hello. I was 14 and already married to baseball. Barry Bonds was an MVP. This was a big deal for me and my aunt knew it. Barry graciously complied and spent over an hour at my aunt and uncle’s place shooting the bull with all 5 of us. I hung on every word. It was surreal and something I’ll never forget.
Needless to say, I was rooting for the Pirates in the 1992 NLCS. Bonds made the throw from left field that nearly got Bream out at the plate. Alas, it wasn’t meant to be. Barry went on to San Francisco
where he would fail to make the Giants team in 1993. He retired soon after and became a pastry chef in Galveston, TX. The rest is history.
My uncle passed away a few years ago and my aunt just passed away this year. Although I didn’t see much of them (winters in Bradenton, summers in Colorado), I miss them very much and will always remember the few spring vacations I spent at their place in Florida…especially that 1991 visit.
Marsh is currently an umpire supervisor and spends a lot of his time during the season in the pressbox at Great American Ball Park.