Have Barry Bonds' Arms Really Not Grown?

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Yesterday, Editor & Publisher, of all places, ran a column saying Barry Bonds' elbow brace gives him an unfair advantage. Over at Baseball Prospectus, Will Carroll follows up and stumbles onto a scoop of his own.

According to Mark Silva, the guy who designs Bonds' arm brace every season, debunks the E&P story and, even more to the point, claims Bonds arms have not grown in the slightest since 1992. No, really.

Silva states that because of the custom nature of the work, he's been asked to make casts of Bonds each year. In the first couple of years, he went through the entire process, but due to his workload, he started checking Bonds with precision calipers each subsequent year. "If I made the same brace every year for 12 or more years," Silva said, "it was because there was no size change in Barry's arms."

You read that correctly—the man who not only builds Bonds' brace, but who has taken precision measurements of his arm since 1992, has not seen any increase in the size of Bonds' arm. Point blank, Silva said "there's been no significant change in the size of his arms."


If this is true — and we have our doubts — our minds are kind of blown. If Bonds' arms aren't bigger ... well, then, what is? But again: We have our doubts.

By the way, if you're wondering what your sports media world will be like post-756 ... look no further. It'll be nicer.


Barry Bonds' Brace [Baseball Prospectus]
Barry Bonds' HR Record Tainted by Elbow 'Armor'? [Editor And Publisher]