Pete Rose Needs To Be Inducted Into The Baseball Hall Of Fame Now

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Pete Rose was permanently banned from baseball in August of 1989, just three years after the conclusion of his playing days. He has yet to be re-instated.

He first denied any involvement in gambling and then finally admitted his role back in 2004 — none of those wagers were on his own Reds to lose, he claimed. But now that gambling is practically celebrated by every major sport in America, isn’t this the perfect time to free Pete Rose and induct him into the Baseball Hall of Fame? He belongs in Cooperstown.

“I was 30 years too early,” Rose said to USA Today. Touché, Pete.

This is what’s really happening:

Baseball is making an example of Pete Rose so that insider gambling never becomes an issue within the league. They likely thought going soft on Rose for gambling on his own team would send the wrong message and that other players would interpret it as a wink and a nod about betting in general.

So Pete Rose took an unnecessarily harsh punishment so baseball could avoid future gambling controversy. That’s understandable on the surface, but fans of baseball are no longer quite so sympathetic. They don’t want the single most decorated hitter in league history banned from the Hall of Fame because he gambled.

Unless there’s any evidence that Rose gambled on his team to lose, what’s the issue?

Boxing megastar Floyd Mayweather Jr. bet on himself a few years ago and was celebrated for it. John Moriello wrote in June of last year that the 50-0 defensive master raked in $750 million gambling on himself to win.

“You guys will see the ticket, don’t worry,” Mayweather said in another interview with USA Today. “You guys will see the betting ticket. I can’t really say what’s the number, but I will bet something heavy. Will it be my biggest ever? Most likely.”

The boxing star knew that people would applaud him for betting on himself, so he said it with a smile on his face.

Pete Rose doesn’t receive that same coverage. Every once in a while, a beat writer constructs a 200-word blurb no one reads in support of baseball’s hit king, but there’s just not enough agreement to draw a change in policy.

We’re not suggesting Pete Rose didn’t know what he was doing — he knew full well baseball would hate his gambling habit. However, the disproportionate punishment should have been rescinded by now. Like Mayweather, Rose clearly believed enough in his own abilities to wager his hard earned money on them.

Pete Rose was brought on The Dan Patrick Show back in 2007 to discuss that confidence:

“I bet on my team every night,” Rose said. “I didn’t bet on my team four nights a week. I bet on my team to win every night because I loved my team, I believed in my team. I did everything in my power every night to win that game.”

Sounds like a much better ambassador to the game of baseball than the load management group that currently takes “scheduled days off.”

Are we missing something here? The best contact hitter in baseball history gambled on his team to win every night and was banned for life, but healthy players under contract to entertain are sitting out games? The mental gymnastics required to defend this injustice is staggering. Baseball should right this wrong now.

Pete Rose has done more than enough time in an MLB jail cell. Time to #FreePeteRose.





Written by Gary Sheffield, Jr

Gary Sheffield Jr is the son of should-be MLB Hall of Famer, Gary Sheffield. He covers basketball and baseball for, chats with the Purple and Gold faithful on LakersNation, and shitposts on Twitter. You can follow him at GarySheffieldJr


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  1. Ain’t happening Pete knew the rules betting is a huge no no going back to Shoeless Joe Jackson as a player no doubt over 4k hits no one else even close loved watching him play too bad bad decision on PR part great player

  2. Baseball wont because baseball has always been up its own ass about unwritten rules and has an unwillingness to make substantive changes to improve the game. One should be able to bet on their own team.

  3. The rule is written its Rule 21 PR was well aware of it and knew it was a death sentence I’m a big fan of PR loved watching him and the big red machine great team but he screwed the pooch on this one unfortunately

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