Breaking the Bonds of servitude.

There were three chairs on the dais at Barry Bonds’ farewell press conference today, one for San Francisco Giants general manager Brian Sabean, one for owner Peter Magowan and one, presumably, for Bonds. Guess which seat was empty?

How fitting is that? Barry Bonds, He Who Shows Up When He Pleases (Which Is More Often Than Not, And For That We Should Be Grateful), didn’t feel like showing up on Friday. So he didn’t. Farewell!

Guess he was miffed by the fact the Giants didn’t tell him any earlier that they wouldn’t bring him back in 2008. By not showing up, Bonds’ gesture shows me that he is completely in control of his ‘roid rage: He knows not to publicly place himself in a position conducive to rage.

Magowan made sure to mention that, during the first 11 of Bonds’ 15 years on the team, the Giants had the third-best winning percentage in baseball. It’s not too hard to read between those lines: The Giants should have ditched Bonds after losing the 2002 World Series to the Angels.

As someone who covered the Giants from 2003-06, I’m not as curious to see where Bonds ends up playing in ’08 as I am to see how much he gets paid. If it’s less than $8M per year — a VERY real possibilty — and especially if it’s only guaranteed for one year, the Giants got SCREWED. At that price, for one year, $8M is plenty worth it to get the extra butts in the Bayside seats, and for Bonds to retire in a Giants uniform. A team can rebuild around that much contract space.

So the Bonds watch is on. You know, when he decides to show up.

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About J.P. Hoornstra

J.P. Hoornstra covers the Dodgers, Angels and Major League Baseball for the Orange County Register, Los Angeles Daily News, Long Beach Press-Telegram, Torrance Daily Breeze, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Whittier Daily News and Redlands Daily Facts. Before taking the beat in 2012, J.P. covered the NHL for four years. UCLA gave him a degree once upon a time; when he graduated on schedule, he missed getting Arnold Schwarzenegger's autograph on his diploma by five months.

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