How would you feel about your son or daughter being coached by a convicted felon? Would your feelings change is said felon was also the most loyal friend in the entire world? That’s the moral dilemma faced by Northern Californians upon learning Barry Bonds’ former trainer Greg Anderson (above, right) is an assistant coach for the Capitol Electric squad of the Burlingame Youth Baseball Association. “It’s kind of fun to have a celebrity coaching the team,” one mother told the New York Times’ Juliet Macur, while adding “it was fine to have Anderson coach because the boys were never alone with him.”
On Friday, Anderson was one of three coaches for Capitol Electric but was clearly in charge. As the third-base coach, he continually spoke to his runners.
“Now what did I just say?” he yelled at one player who stayed put after Anderson told him to run.
When one player swung on a 3-0 count, Anderson made him sprint to the left-field fence and back. The entire team had to run several sprints after losing the game. His son, Cole, the team’s star pitcher, ran, too, though he sat out the game with a thumb injury. The other team was long gone.
“Oh, he gets the players in shape and is the most knowledgeable coach my son ever had,” Tim Gannon, a real estate broker, said. “Some parents have a problem with him being a coach, but it’s not like he was caught stealing or did some bad things with children. But, yes, it’s still bad, and I explained that to my son.”
“My son thought it was weird, but in the same breath, said it was cool to see his coach on TV,” Gannon said, adding that he was not nervous that Anderson would negatively influence the players because he was “already outed as a guy who gave steroids and is under much more scrutiny.”