Share this article

“Dusty’s Opinion Don’t Mean Sh*t”- Adding Fuel to an Already Topsy-Turvy Relationship, Respected Manager Once Made a Bold MVP Pick to Anger Giants Legend Barry Bonds

Published 07/22/2023, 10:14 AM EDT

Follow Us

Some names achieve success but remain in the negative limelight. Barry Bonds is one such name, who did everything right but had enough opposites pulling him towards controversies. It also becomes visible in his strained relationships with his teammates and managers. Though there were parts everything looked good between him and the legendary Dusty Baker, there were moments when it fell apart.

America’s Favorite Video Today

An identical scenario occurred during the MVP race. And Baker’s decision to not back Bonds became a moment of conflict. The book Love Me, Hate Me: Barry Bonds talks about this incident, adding another chapter to the distinct personality of Barry Bonds.

A Dusty Baker Decision Left Barry Bonds Unhappy


Article continues below this ad

Winning an MVP award is one of the colossal achievements of any MLB player. Barry Bonds had this in mind and wanted all the support. But when it did not come across, especially from the Giants manager Dusty Baker, Bonds was angry.


Article continues below this ad

On page 217, author Jeff Pearlman described the entire episode. It read, “Kent and Bonds both desperately wanted the MVP trophy—each for his glory, but also to deny it to the other.”


Get instantly notified of the hottest MLB stories via Google! Click on Follow Us and Tap the Blue Star.

Follow Us

via Getty

Jeff wrote, describing what followed later, “Things turned especially awkward late in the season when Baker made his support of Kent known.” It displeased Barry Bonds, who already considered himself to be the MVP of the team. It was visible in his reaction when he said, “What do I care? Dusty’s opinion don’t mean shit.”


Article continues below this ad

Barry Bonds Once Audaciously Threatened the MLB Commissioner with ‘Vacation’ Ultimatum Following MVP Snub

It opened up the problematic relationship between Baker and Bonds. The two were kind in the open, but off the camera, Baker remained critical of Bonds for his self-centered approach. It was the reason that made him choose Jeff Kent over him. But the story of conflict for the MVP did not end here. 

Impatient Bonds Wanted an Early Answer

The MVP episode didn’t end with disagreement over MVP choice but took a different turn altogether. The competition grew between him and Kent, and Bonds wanted an early answer. He sent one of his representatives to the MLB office to know the winner days before the last announcement. It did not add to his cause, but he eventually came second to the National League MVP, Jeff Kent, by 279 points.

The entire episode did end up adding another controversy to his name. But it could not stop Bonds from winning the MVP title for three consecutive years from 2001 to 2004. He eventually finished his career with seven NL MVPs to his name.

WATCH THIS STORY–From Alex Rodriguez to Barry Bonds – Top Players Who Aren’t a Part of The MLB Hall of Fame

Providing feedback will help us make your experience better.

The Fan's Perspective

Enjoyed Your Read? Let us know how likely you are to recommend EssentiallySports to your friends!

Least Likely

Most Likely



Written by:

Saurabh Saini


One take at a time

Even after having an engineering background, nothing stopped Saurabh Saini from following his passion and writing about sports. With a sound knowledge of American sports, Saurabh specializes in baseball. Before joining EssentiallySports, Saurabh has written around 800 articles spanning MLB, NFL, and NHL.
Show More>

Edited by:

Deepanshi Bajaj