Former Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants outfielder Barry Bonds is regarded as one of the greatest hitters in baseball history. He was selected to 14 All-Star games and has won a record seven MVP titles. The California native also holds the record of being 12-times Silver Slugger in the course of a 22-year big league career.
Known for his power, Barry Bonds led the league twice in home runs (1993, 2001) and recorded an incredible 73 homers in 2001. No player has even hit more in a single season.
In a sit-down interaction with Bally Sports Florida, he was asked about his hitting philosophy and developing young talent. Bonds said that he was direct and candid about his approach towards coaching:
"You can't just put a pacifier in his mouth all the time. There is a time when you got to say no ...that's out," said Bonds
Bonds was speaking back in 2016 when he was working as a hitting coach with the Miami Marlins.
It is important to note that the two-time batting champion also emphasized "fun" as a key factor for young hitters who are getting into the game.
"The more fun you make it, the better results you will get out of it," added Bonds
Bonds spoke about a balance between positive reinforcement and discipline when dealing with kids. While it is key to push kids with more games and more at-bats, it is also important to not pressure them too much.
Barry Bonds is the all-time home run leader with 762 homers in 2986 games
Developing players and coaches may be wise to listen to Barry Bonds. He definitely knows a thing or two about the art of hitting. The prolific hitter ranks first all-time in the MLB in home runs (762) and sixth on the RBIs list (1996).
Over an illustrious 22-year career with the Pirates and Giants, he has racked up an incredible 2935 hits over 2986 games. He has walked 2558 times, ranking first in the category ahead of Rickey Henderson and Babe Ruth. He has a lifetime .298 batting average, a .444 OBP, and an OPS of 1.051.