Major League Baseball announced this week 3 new players are being added to the Hall of Fame. With all due respect to Rickey Henderson, Jim Rice, and Joe (Flash) Gordon, WHO CARES?
The MLB Hall of Fame has turned into a politically correct popularity contest. Sure, there are great players in the hall, the newest additions included, but it still does not contain one of the undisputed great players of all time… Pete Rose.
Pete Rose has spent the last 19 years under a ban from baseball for gambling. Let me get this straight, it is okay to alter the game by using corked bats, scuffed balls, tar, steroids, and other forms of cheating, but to bet on your team to win deserves a lifetime ban? Give me a break. I’ll take a half dozen players like Pete Rose on my team over any 6 Hall of Fame players you can name. Give me Charlie Hustle as a role model over a drug addict any day.
Pete Rose the manager did wrong. No doubt. He broke the rules in his personal capacity. No question. But, it could also be said he put his money where his mouth is. We love pro football players and coaches who guarantee a win, why do we hate a manager who guarantees it with his wallet?
Pete Rose the player still holds many records. He is the all-time hits leader, the only active players who look like they can possibly match his numbers will still have to play at a high level for another 10 years. He won the MVP award, two Gold Glove awards, three World Series, and played in 17 All-Star games at 5 different positions!
Yes he broke a rule. Yes, he was arrogant about it. Yes, he denied it until he got caught. If these are the guidelines to ban people from baseball, we will have a hard time fielding teams.
Let it go, baseball. Grow up. Twenty years is a long time to hold a grudge.