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Video: Blue-Belt Barry! MLB legend Barry Bonds levels up with Brazilian jiu-jitsu promotion

Add former San Francisco Giant, Barry Bonds, to the list of celebrities getting into the Brazilian jiu-jitsu (BJJ) world.

Evolve Training Center San Francisco revealed on its Instagram that several students got belt promotions today (Thurs., June 29, 2023). Amongst the group was none other than Major League Baseball (MLB) legend, Bonds, who received his blue belt from John “J” Janero as seen in the video embedded above.

“There’s this person that’s kind of ‘I’ll see it when I believe it,’” Janero said. “He says, ‘I have a guy and I want to bring him in on some off hours.’ And I said, ‘Hey, bro. I’m not treating anybody special.’ Well, it’s Barry Bonds, and I said, ‘Well, whatever you need.’ We’ll make this work.

“I’ve been promoted by my idols, Rickson Gracie and Xande and Saulo [Ribeiro], but I’ve never been able to promote my idol. So, Barry [claps].”

“Almost had me in tears,” Bonds replied.

Bonds isn’t the first baseball star to get involved with martial arts. Most famously (or infamously), Jose Canseco, made a shocking one-fight appearance in mixed martial arts (MMA) against Hong-Man Choi in May 2009. Unfortunately for Canseco, he only lasted 77 seconds with the towering 7-foot-2 Choi, suffering a technical knockout loss at Dream 9 in Yokohama, Japan.

Bonds, 58, played for 21 years in the MLB as part of the Pittsburgh Pirates and San Francisco Giants. He most notably holds the record for most career home runs (762) as well as most home runs in a single season (73).

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