MVP Bonds escapes dad's shadow

November 20, 1990|By New York Times

NEW YORK -- Barry Bonds spent a childhood and the bulk of his major-league career trying to accomplish statistical feats that would allow him to join "clubs" statistically established by his father. Yesterday, Barry Bonds entered a club that his father, Bobby, never gained access to when he was named the National League's Most Valuable Player.

Like his Pittsburgh Pirates teammate, Doug Drabek, who won the Cy Young Award last week, Bonds, a 26-year-old leftfielder, came within one vote of making it a unanimous selection. His teammate and close friend, Bobby Bonilla, received the only first-place vote that Bonds did not get out of 24 cast by members of the Baseball Writers Association of America.

Although Bonds led the league in only one category -- slugging percentage (.565) -- his name was sprinkled liberally throughout league-leader categories. Bonds hit .301 with 33 home runs, stole 52 bases and drove in 114 runs.

The highest Bonds' father ever finished in such voting was third, in 1973, when he finished behind Pete Rose and Willie Stargell after hitting 39 home runs and stealing 43 bases.

But the son accomplished more, much more, this past season. He was the first player to both score and drive in more than 100 runs, hit more than 30 home runs, steal more than 50 bases and hit over .300.

"I'm very proud of that, doing something that no one else has done in baseball," Bonds said.

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