Rosenthal: Pete Rose never gave Rob Manfred any reason to change his mind


It’s sadder than anything else.


The average person who didn’t follow closely might sympathize with Pete Rose, thinking that he had suffered long enough. That at the age of 81, it’s time for baseball to forgive and forget. bring it back. Make him eligible for the Hall of Fame.

Except for Rose, it’s never quite that simple.

Commissioner Rob Manfred would not be wise to lift Rose’s lifetime ban, which the king of the game received all along from the late Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti in 1989 for betting on baseball. Rose is a wild card that could embarrass Manfred and Sport at any moment. Manfred, the business attorney, is not the type to take such a risk. Nor should he.

Even if Manfred was willing to lift the ban, Rose would hardly guarantee her entry into the hall. It won’t even be eligible for consideration until December 2024. It won’t have a chance to be inducted unless the hall Commission Brief History He placed him on the ballot for baseball’s Classic Era election, which includes players before 1980.

Rose is in the news again because of a A letter of apology and a request for forgiveness, which he sent to Manfred earlier this month. This wasn’t the first time Express this feeling. And typical of Rose, she didn’t stay private. TMZ posted the letter on Friday, saying Rose sent it to Manfred four days ago. Crazy things are happening in the reports, but it seems unlikely that the commissioner’s office will release the letter to TMZ. Rose did not respond to a request for comment.

“Despite my many mistakes, I am very proud of what I have accomplished as a baseball player – I am a Hit King and my dream is to be in the Hall of Fame,” Rose wrote in his letter. “Like all of us, I believe in accountability. I am 81 years old and I know I have been held accountable and that I am holding myself accountable. I am writing now to ask for another chance.”

Sounds reasonable, right? Major League Baseball Partners with gambling companies now. So do its broadcast partners, including its other employer, Fox Sports. But while the sport’s stance on gambling has softened due to the financial benefit, its rules Ban players, referees and any club, official or employee of the league from betting on matches that did not do so.

Another problem: Too often, Rose’s words ring hollow. Often, he can’t get out of his own way.

In August, the Commissioner’s Office allowed Rose to participate Veles Alumni weekend and celebration of the 1980 World Series title he helped achieve. This was Rose’s first appearance at Philadelphia Stadium in more than three decades since he was suspended. The Phillies planned to add him to the Wall of Fame in 2017, but canceled his induction the following allegations That he had sex with an underage girl in the seventies. a woman He said in the court filing that she had sexual encounters with Rose beginning in 1973, when she was 14 or 15 years old; Rose said his affair with her began when she was 16, the age of consent in Ohio. (Fox, where she worked with Rose from April 2015 through August 2017, Cut ties with him Around the same time.) The statute of limitations expired, and Rose was never charged with a crime.

The reunion of Rose and his former bandmates should have been a happy occasion. Instead, Rose made him uneasy. When Alex Covey, a reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer, I asked him about Rose responded to the child rape allegations, “No, I’m not here to talk about that. Sorry about that. That was 55 years ago, sweetie.” He later said, “Who cares what happened 50 years ago?” he is too Back In the Phillies TV booth, they curse and make a crude joke about John Crook’s testicular cancer.

Three months later, Rose writes his letter to Manfred saying he is holding himself accountable. But for Rose, untrustworthy behavior is nothing new. He spent the first 14 years of his ban He denies that he bet on baseball, including in his 1989 autobiography, Pete Rose: My Story. He served five months in prison in 1990 for filing the lawsuit False income tax returns. A secret meeting in Milwaukee with former commissioner Bud Selig in 2002, during which he admitted to betting on baseball as a manager for the first time, appears to have gone awry. News of the meeting leaked out, and Rose immediately followed it up with an appearance in a Las Vegas sportsbook.

Two years later, Rose released a second autobiography, My Prison Without Bars, as the Hall of Fame prepared to induct two new members, Dennis Eckersley and Paul Molitor. Rose said the timing wasn’t his fault. Nothing is ever his fault.

On the day Giamatti announced Rose’s removal, he said, “The burden of showing a life redirected, reshaped, and rehabilitated is the entire burden of the House of Rose.” Rose has faced this burden only sporadically.

Others, too, are in Cooperstown purgatory, but let’s not draw any equations between Rose and players like Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens who allegedly used steroids before the league sanctioned such behavior. Rose broke the cardinal rule, which has been around for a long time in the books. Perhaps he could have created a path back to his position by staying quietly on the good side of the league. But acting discreetly, following a process… that’s not how he acts.

Manfred, who became commissioner in January 2015, Rejection of the application by Rose to reinstate him the following December, saying Rose was “too short” Meet the requirements. For all Manfred knows, he could bring Rose back and then get hit with some more bombshells. Rose admitted to betting on baseball only after his football career ended. But in June 2015, ESPN got copies From betting records from 1986 that provided the first written evidence that Rose gambled on games under the name of reds Manager player. It’s always something.

Hall of Fame, that’s what Rose wants. Strictly in terms of his accomplishments as a player — a record 4,256 hits, three World Series titles, and 17 All-Star selections at five different positions — he’s also what he deserves. But the Hall in 1991 adopted a rule preventing players on the baseball ineligible list from joining Cooperstown. Before Rose can be considered, Manfred will need to take the lead by removing Rose from the disqualified list. Again, induction will not necessarily follow.

The Historical Overview Committee that creates the Classic Era ballot is made up of 11 members of the Baseball Writers Association of America. Perhaps Rose will bypass that group, which will only nominate him for consideration. But will the Classic Era committee, made up of 16 Hall of Famers, CEOs and historians/writers, actually elect him? And if that happened, did any of the Hall of Famers boycott his induction ceremony in protest?

These questions will not be relevant until December 2024. If Rose fails to be elected, he will have to wait another three years for the next ballot in the classic era. He could continue to appeal to Manfred, appealing to general sympathy. But Rose, to borrow a term from horse racing, one of his favorite sports, is left at the gate. His race towards Cooperstown is still permanently stalled, and it’s no one’s fault but his.

(Photo: Matt Roark/The Associated Press)

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