The Hunter: Barry Bonds

I have a piece in the April issue of GQ on Barry Bonds. I report on his fate after leaving baseball and his experience being the target of baseball’s efforts to purge the steroids era from its past. The embattled former Giants slugger has been unsuccessful in his attempts to get back into the game. But more so, the piece is a portrait of a man whose life is at an inflection point, between his past and an uncertain future. And I also report on Bonds’ newfound passion: hunting. From the piece:

He pulls out his binoculars and surveys the field. Soon a giant whitetail emerges out of the woods, and Mogle gets excited. “This guy is big!”

“Oh, without question,” Bonds says as the camera remains fixed on the deer. “He’d be pretty tough to pass up right there.”

As he lifts his gun, his expression turns cold and clinical. Here’s a glimmer of the old Barry Bonds, the fearsome slugger who once wore this same look as he hulked over the batter’s box, daring pitchers to confront him head-on. He cradles the rifle in his shoulder and sights the deer through the scope. It’s strange, in one sense, that the most hunted man in baseball is now an avid hunter, but not so surprising that he still gets the jones to take aim at something. “He’s coming in, he’s coming in right now,” Bonds says as the whitetail approaches. “Okay, get ready.”

He puts his finger on the trigger. The image goes split screen—Bonds on the left, the buck on the right. The picture closes in and steadies on Bonds before suddenly turning dark. Silence. And then…CRACK!

Read the full piece HERE

And watch Barry shoot a whitetail buck:


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