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2001 Baseball America Player of the Year
Barry Bonds

Barry Bonds
Photo: Larry Goren
Normally, you'd expect a story here. But what else is there to say: Barry Bonds is good at baseball? He hits a lot of balls really far? You know all that, and you know all the numbers and records and accolades. So we won't bother force feeding you anymore of that stuff. We'll simply leave you with what players and managers had to say about Bonds' season, a season like no other.

It’s a lot tougher to hit when you go up to the plate knowing you might see one, two, three pitches to hit in a week. It’s not easy to hit that way. And if you see that pitch to hit, you might not hit it for a home run. If you only get a base hit, everybody boos you.
--Mark McGwire

(Weight training) has made him extra-productive, in what probably should have been the twilight of his career . . . There’s nothing he can’t do on a baseball field. There’s no telling what he can do.
--Mike Piazza

If he had been pitched to all year long, who’s to say he wouldn’t have hit 100 home runs? The guy is that good.
--Jim Tracy

He’s been ridiculously consistent for 15 years. To put up those kinds of numbers year after year, now he’s 37 and only getting better. It’s like he’s in his prime. I hope I’m in that kind of shape when I’m 37.
--Derek Jeter

He can do anything. Move a runner from second to third. Stolen base in a big situation? I’ll steal it for you. Home run? You got it.
--Bobby Cox

Barry Bonds
Photo: Steve Moore
No one’s quicker than him. You can’t sneak anything past him . . . He’s not a home run hitter. He’s just a great hitter who happens to be hitting a ton of homers.
--Greg Maddux

He and Hank (Aaron) both have that recognition. They both recognize the difference between fastballs, curves, changeups and sliders really well. You’re not out in front or behind. You’re right there.
--Dusty Baker

If you could explain it, I would have been in grooves like this a long time ago. You’re almost in shock. I come around and touch home plate and I’m in the dugout thinking, 'What did I just do?' You don’t know what to think.
--Barry Bonds

In '98, (the record) was only 61. And then Mark McGwire came and hit 70 and that was like 'wow.' Now you see 73--that's unbelievable.
--Sammy Sosa

Not a chance . . . I’m not Mark McGwire. I’m just not that powerful a hitter. Mark is so much stronger than I am.
--Barry Bonds, June 21, 2001

I recruited Barry. I really knew him. But we had different requirements, and he didn’t get into USC. He was intelligent but didn’t want to do the work. They all [Bonds, Mark McGwire and Randy Johnson] could have been on the same team.
--Former Southern California coach Rod Dedeaux

His best attribute was confidence. What makes Barry special is he’s extremely strong mentally . . . He wasn’t as physical a player then, especially these last three years. He was a frail kid with a quick bat, 165-170 (pounds), max. You’re talking about a whole different animal now.
--Former Arizona State teammate Don Wakamatsu

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