Provisions in revised Bonds deal holding up process

NEW YORK -- Barry Bonds' contract with the
San Francisco Giants isn't final just yet.

After the commissioner's office rejected Bonds' $15.8 million,
one-year deal because it contained a personal-appearance provision,
the team sent revised documents to his agent, Jeff Borris.

"At this time, Barry is not signing the new documents," Borris

Baseball's Uniform Player Contract states a player "agrees to
cooperate with the club in any and all reasonable promotional
activities." Bonds' contract had additional language that the
commissioner's office rejected.

Borris did not detail the provisions in dispute, but a baseball
executive, speaking on condition of anonymity because these details
had not been made public, said they dealt with personal

After several disputes, lawyers for the union and the
commissioner's office agreed last fall that no additional
appearance provisions would be accepted in future player contracts.
It was not yet clear Wednesday whether Bonds must sign a new
contract or whether the one he already signed would be accepted
with the troublesome language eliminated.

Giants executives did not immediately return telephone calls
seeking comment.

Bonds and the Giants, who agreed to financial terms Dec. 7, said
Monday the drawn-out agreement had been finalized.

Still, they disagree on the meaning of an unusual provision in
the deal relating to Bonds' potential legal problems. In the
contract, a list of crimes acts is spelled out in a section.

"Player acknowledges and agrees that an indictment for any
criminal act under [that section] ... is proper grounds for
termination of this contract," Bonds' contract states.

The language in the contract was read to The Associated Press by
a person with a copy of the agreement.

"Player also acknowledges and agrees that he will not grieve,
appeal or otherwise challenge any club action to terminate this
contract as a result of player's indictment for any criminal acts
[specified] ... nor will he cause or authorize any third party,
such as the Major League Baseball Players Association, to grieve,
appeal or otherwise challenge any club action to terminate this
contract as a result of player's indictment for any [specified]
criminal acts."

The Giants wanted to protect themselves if Bonds is charged in
the federal government's steroids investigation. Bonds' personal
trainer, Greg Anderson, is in a California federal prison because
he has refused to testify whether Bonds committed perjury when he
told a 2003 grand jury he never knowingly used
performance-enhancing drugs.

Borris said the contract language is unenforceable under
baseball's collective bargaining agreement and its inclusion is

"Although it is not my policy to comment on the specifics of an
individual player's contract, the reporting that Barry will allow
the Giants to get out of his contract if he is indicted on the
federal steroid investigation is inaccurate," he said. "The
collective bargaining agreement governs the work relationship
between the owners and players, not the Giants' unilateral

At a news conference Wednesday to announce the 2008 All-Star
game will be played at Yankee Stadium, commissioner Bud Selig
wouldn't address a question about baseball's plans if Bonds breaks
Hank Aaron's home run record. Bonds has 734 homers, 21 shy of
Aaron's mark.

"I think I've spoken on that simply as much as I'm going to,"
Selig said. "I've said that we would handle it the way we've
handled everything else, and that's all I have to say on that
subject right now."