MVP or no MVP, Pittsburgh manager Jim Leyland decided Monday to lay down the law to Barry Bonds.
In an obscenity-laced tirade, Leyland ripped into the outfielder who was National League MVP last season. "I don't give a damn what his problems are," the manager shouted. "He's not going to run this camp. He can just go home."Bonds, angry over losing his salary arbitration and being forced to settle for $2.3 million instead of the $3.25 million he sought, recently said he wouldn't re-sign with Pittsburgh after 1992 "if they offered me $100 million."
The pressure cooker popped when the outfielder and manager shouted at each other after Bonds and instructor Bill Virdon, a former major league player and manager, yelled at each other and traded ugly glances during a routine fly ball drill.
Leyland raced over from an adjacent field and started screaming at Bonds.
"One player's not going to run this club," Leyland said, loud enough to be heard over the Pirates' four practice fields.
"If guys don't want to be here, if guys aren't happy with their money, don't take it out on everybody else."
Earlier, Bonds and publicist Jim Lachimia shouted at each other when the player asked several photographers to quit taking pictures of him.
Bonds said he didn't care if the incident further damaged his public image. Later, Leyland tried to defuse the incident, calling it "a family squabble that just boiled a bit."
Elsewhere, teams prepared to renew a number of unsigned players who are not eligible for salary arbitration. New Atlanta general manager John Schuerholz said he would use that tactic on pitcher John Smoltz, infielder Jeff Blauser and outfielder-first baseman Tommy Gregg if they are not signed by Thursday.
Cincinnati renewed catcher Joe Oliver, pitcher Jack Armstrong, first baseman Hal Morris and pitcher Tim Layana. The Chicago Cubs, who renewed outfielder Jerome Walton at $185,000 in 1990 after he won the National League Rookie of the Year award, renewed him again.
In other developments:
- Dr. Richard Caspari confirmed Monday the earlier diagnosis which showed the presence of four bone spurs - three small and one large - in Frank Viola's left elbow. Dr. James Parkes, the New York Mets' team physician will be in camp on Tuesday and team officials along with Viola will discuss the the former Cy Young Award winner's options for treatment, including surgery.
- Baltimore's Jim Palmer threw batting practice for the second time in spring training Monday, but said the real test of his comeback attempt will come later this week. "My theory is - and it's quite simple - that nothing means anything until I face hitters," he said. "BP is for conditioning. You get your arm built up.