Marlins hire Barry Bonds as batting coach

Fri Dec 4, 2015 1:23pm EST
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(Reuters) - Barry Bonds, Major League Baseball's all-time home run leader whose suspicion of doping has kept him out of the Hall of Fame, has been hired as batting coach for the Miami Marlins, the National League club said on Friday.

Bonds, 51, in his first stint as a major league coach, joins the staff of Don Mattingly, the former manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers who recently signed to become the Marlins' skipper.

One of the most feared hitters in baseball during his career, Bonds leads the all-time home run list with 762 and hit an MLB-record 73 homers in 2001. He had a career batting average of .298 over 22 seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Giants.

After retiring, Bonds was indicted in December 2007 on perjury charges for his testimony before a grand jury investigating the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative (BALCO) and its distribution of illegal performance-enhancing drugs.

He was convicted of an obstruction charge in 2011, but a court of appeals panel overturned the conviction in April.

Despite his glittering statistical achievements, Bonds has been denied entry in the voting done by baseball writers for enshrinement in Cooperstown.

This year, he was named on 36.8 percent of ballots, less than half the 75 percent needed for election to the shrine.

Miami also announced the hiring of Tim Wallach as bench coach and Juan Nieves as pitching coach.

(Reporting by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Mark Lamport-Stokes)

San Francisco Giants former outfielder Barry Bonds reacts during batting practice prior to the game against the Chicago Cubs at Scottsdale Stadium. Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports