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Should Pete Rose Be in the Baseball Hall of Fame?
Pete Rose Should Be In Cooperstown
I suspect that baseball fans will never know the complete story behind Major League Baseball's decision to ban Pete Rose for life. We've been told that he was caught gambling on his own team and that created a conflict of interest for him because as manager he had the opportunity to affect the outcome of the game. That makes perfect sense, until you consider the fact that he was never accused of betting against the Reds. It would be easy for a manager to affect the outcome of a game by making decisions that made failure more likely. But as a manager, his main job was to put out the most competitive team possible. Obviously if he was betting on his team winning he would want to do everything possible to field the most competitive team possible. Doesn't sound like a conflict of interest to me!
Pete Rose broke the law by gambling and failing to report his winnings on his taxes (something that I am sure most people who gamble could be convincted of). I was in graduate school at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale when Pete was serving his sentence at the federal penitentiary in Marion, Illinois, just down the road from Carbondale. To me, he has already served his sentence, he's even admitted that he did something wrong, and it's time to move on.
My suspicion is that after Pete Rose dies, somewhere down the road, some future commissioner of baseball will do what each commissioner since this scandal broke could have done, and if that happens, I can bet that Pete Rose will be elected on the first ballot. He brought a lot to the game of baseball and he deserves to be rewarded for it. He certainly belongs there more than, say, Roger Clemens or Barry Bonds, because both of those men, I believe, gave themselves unfair advantages that resulted in skewed statistics. Pete Rose became the career hits leader by working hard. After all, they don't call him Charlie Hustle for nothing!