Apology Accepted

You may be an unwitting Barry Bonds apologist. Take our quiz and find out!

7) After declining to comment on steroid questions and shooing reporters away from his locker at the Giants' spring-training facility in Mesa, Ariz., Bonds -- according to several news accounts -- raises his fist and says, "Black power." Your reaction:

a) What a jackass. It's not just Bonds, and not just black players, who are under suspicion. The very idea that a millionaire baseball player would make this a racial issue demeans those who have truly fought for justice and equality.

b) I'm not sure how valid his accusations of racism are, but Bonds is under a lot of pressure and scrutiny. If he thinks he's being unfairly singled out because he's black, he has the right to voice that opinion.

c) Right on, brother Barry! As-Salaam Alaykum!

8) You're browsing in a baseball memorabilia shop one afternoon, and you spot a Bonds rookie card from 1986 -- when he weighed about 185 pounds in his Pittsburgh Pirates uniform. Startled by how slim and diminutive the younger slugger appears, you conclude:

a) The wiry 21-year-old and 225-pound 39-year-old look like two different people. No workout regimen alone could account for the change in Bonds.

b) As people grow older, their appearance changes. Maybe Bonds has morphed a bit more than most, but increased muscle mass and better endurance hardly sounds like the work of steroids, does it?

c) Fifty dollars for a Bonds rookie card? Where's my checkbook?

9) Which of these quotations from Major League Baseball personalities best speaks to your attitude toward Bonds' possible steroid use?

a) Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Turk Wendell to the Denver Post: "If my personal trainer, me, Turk Wendell, got indicted for that, there's no one in the world who wouldn't think that I wasn't taking steroids. I mean, what, because he's Barry Bonds, no one's going to say that? I mean, obviously he did it. ... It's clear just seeing his body."

b) Former Giants manager and current Cubs manager Dusty Baker, to reporters at spring training: "It's like McCarthyism. They are looking for someone who looks like a communist. I'll probably get in trouble for saying that, too. You know -- he lost weight, he gained weight ... I don't know."

c) Barry Bonds to Muscle and Fitness Magazinein June 2003: "I visit BALCO every three to six months. They check my blood to make sure my levels are where they should be. Maybe I need to eat more broccoli than I normally do. Maybe my zinc and magnesium intakes need to increase, and I need more ZMA. Nobody ever showed it to me in a scientific way before, how important it is to balance your body. I have that knowledge now. ... I'm just shocked by what they've been able to do for me."

10) Driving home one evening, listening to a sports talk-radio show in which the host invites listeners to call the station and weigh in on whether Barry Bonds is taking steroids, you pull over to the side of the road, dial the radio station on your cell phone, and say:

a) "He's juiced."

b) "In this country, we're innocent until proven guilty. Without knowing all the facts, we can't possibly judge Bonds' culpability, and we shouldn't draw conclusions about his past performance."

c) "Dude, Bonds was always considered a home-run hitter -- just because he jumped from a career high of 49 to a record-setting 73 the next year doesn't prove anything, except that the media is out to get him. Real Americans want to forgive. Besides, the focus should be on the field, not on ensuring the everlasting integrity of our national pastime."

How to score:

Score 0 points for every "a" answer, 1 point for every "b," and 2 points for every "c."

9 points or fewer: What, you don't like Barry Bonds? Are you a Marxist or something?

10-15 points: Great job! Um, what are you doing this summer? Do you think you could hit behind Barry?

16-20 points: Congratulations! You're the new host of a talk show on KNBR!

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