Baseball’s career home run leader changed teams for the only time during the winter of 1993, leaving the Pirates to sign a free agent contract with the Giants. He would of course remain there on his way to not only the records for career and single season home runs, but also the record for Most Valuable Player awards.
Now 25 years later, another M.V.P. winning outfielder is leaving the Pirates and heading for the Giants. Pittsburgh just this week traded All-Star slugger Andrew McCutcheon to San Francisco.
McCutcheon, who unlike Bonds is past his prime, should still prove to be a significant upgrade for the Giants, whose outfielders ranked last in home runs in the National League last year. He hit 28 home runs with 88 runs batted in, while finishing with a .278 batting average.
Those numbers are solid, but they pale when compared to the numbers Bonds put up both before and after he left Pittsburgh. He was, in fact, the reigning Most Valuable Player in the National League, fetching his second award in the 1992 season.
His impact on the Giants was immediate, as the fifth place team suddenly became serious contenders. After acquiring Bonds San Francisco improved by thirty wins, finishing with 103 victories in 1993. pittsburgh seo company
A few seasons later Bonds led the Giants to their first N.L. West championship in almost ten years, back when Kevin Mitchell and company won the 1998 pennant before falling to the Oakland Athletics in the Bay Series disrupted by an earthquake.
Bonds would win successive MVP awards for the next few seasons, and San Francisco would reach the postseason three more times before finally claiming another pennant. In the year 2000 they owned the NL West, only to come up short in the Championship series against the New York Mets.
Finally, in 2003, Bonds led the Giants to the Fall Classic. In one of the most memorable World Series in the history of baseball, San Francisco fell to the Anaheim Angels in seven games.
In fewer than ten years, Barry Bonds had brought the Giants their first pennant in over a decade. His impact remained even after he retired as the career home run leader, as San Francisco has since been able to capture three pennants.