Bonds’ routine more tired than ever 

Apparently, one day last season, Barry Bonds decides to wander off the estate he’s staked out for himself in the Giants’ locker room, his three lockers and lounge chair unable to hold his interest.

As he makes his way past players he sort of recognizes — it’s always difficult when they’re not wearing their uniforms with those numbers on their back — while managing to ignore, equipment men and trainers scurry about, readying the area for the night’s game.

Wow, those are pretty nice drawings Omar Vizquel has in his locker, Bonds says to himself without slowing down. That box in Moises Alou’s stall has the driver I’ve been dying to get my hands on, Bonds thinks, but he continues to make his way along.

Suddenly, Bonds is stopped in his tracks. A shiny object at the top of Mark Sweeney’s locker catches his eye. Bonds blinks a couple of times, but can’t help himself as he lugs his large frame to the stall containing Sweeney’s uniforms, bats and gloves. What could this be?

Doesn’t that Southwest Airlines commercial come to mind, the one with a young lady in the bathroom of a home she is visiting, and upon touching something in the medicine chest, the entire thing comes crashing down before her?

Well, Bonds’ curiosity has obviously gotten the better of him. He opens the shiny container, and pops a Pez-like candy into his mouth. Hmm — lemon. Soon Bonds is back into his pregame routine, and his locker room stroll has been forgotten.

Forgotten until Major League Baseball contacts Bonds to tell him that he’s tested positive for amphetamines.Do they send him a letter? An e-mail? Is it an unsolicitated call on his cell phone? "Barry, this is the commissioner ..."

This is just my vision of what could have happened to Bonds, judging from the reports this week. Just a simple case of a grown man encountering a little more sugar than he can handle. No telling what really happened, but as far as Bonds remembers it must have been that lemon Pez he snuck from Sweeney’s locker.

Imagine being Barry’s lawyer, and having to stifle your laughter when you listen to him spin this kind of yarn.

» On a serious note, this episode officially ends the Barry Bonds era for me. Sign him. Don’t sign him. I don’t care any more. He’s not going to break Hank Aaron’s record anyway. He’s just a bloated, over-the-hill ballplayer who’s just going to stink it up this year.

My over/under for his home run total next year? Fourteen. And the Giants will have to go through this crap again next year.

However, I whole-heartedly believe that Bonds is a first-ballot Hall of Famer. But I’m sure he’ll get screwed by these holier-than-thou sportswriters just like Mark McGwire, whose biggest sin is being completely overwhelmed by a congressional hearing.

Like you or I wouldn’t be scared down to our socks if it were us.

Performance-enhancing drugs made their way into baseball, and baseball did nothing about it. Baseball leaders put their collective head in the sand because home runs made them money. So now their Hall of Fame has to include players who may have used. Major League Baseball and its leadership deserve the tarnish. The whole lot of them make me sick.

» So let me see if I get this right. David Beckham relinquishes his captain’s role on the English national team, and then is removed from the team’s roster altogether. Next, he finds he can’t even make Real Madrid’s starting lineup. Can anybody see a trend here?

Beckham is a really nice soccer player who happens to be a good-looking television idol, and he’s been signed by the MLS because of the latter. Sure, he’ll help the Los Angeles Galaxy next season because the MLS is filled with second-rate soccer players. That’s why it struggles.

It’s the minor leagues of soccer, no better or worse than the minor leagues of baseball or basketball. If somebody wants the sport to flourish in America bring over Ronaldinho, Wayne Rooney or Thierry Henry.

Tim Liotta hosts the weekend edition of "Sportsphone 680" on KNBR (680 AM).

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