Pete Rose: Should Hall Of Fame Ban Be Lifted?

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In 1989 Pete Rose, baseball's all-time hits leader, was banned from Major League Baseball for betting on games. He even admitted that he wagered on Reds games while he was managing the team. The length of the sentence...a lifetime. But yesterday Rose was able to don a baseball uniform in Bridgeport and serve as guest manager for the Bluefish of the Independent Atlantic League.

The 73-year-old, formerly but forever known as Charlie Hustle, also served as first base coach for the first five innings of the game, which the Bluefish won 2-0 over the Lancaster Barnstormers.

Due to Rose's lifetime ban, he is not eligible for The Hall of Fame. He is also not allowed to be affiliated with Major League Baseball in any capacity. However, Rose could make this special guest appearance because the Bluefish play in an Independent League, therefore they are not affiliated with any MLB team.

Rose is not looking to make coaching in the Independent League a permanent gig. He admits that he makes way more money making appearances and signing autographs. So why did he decide to put on the stirrups yesterday? The hits leader claims that he wants to be a good ambassador for the game. "If I'm ever reinstated, I won't need a third chance," Rose said. "Believe me."

Obviously Rose badly wants to get into Cooperstown. He served his 25 years, many players who are currently in The Hall of Fame have done worse. Several supporters of Rose, including the hits leader himself, realize that he made a callous error in judgement, that he let his ego get hold of his reason.

So perhaps it's time to let one of the greatest, if not the greatest pure hitters ever, into Cooperstown. Rose had 4,256 hits. The only other player in the history of the game to have more than 4,000 hits was Ty Cobb. Cobb is in The Hall of Fame and by many accounts he was one of the dirtiest, most violent players to ever take the field. Should the voters of The Hall of Fame judge a player by his character or his achievements on the field?

Tell us what you think. Do you think that Rose has served his sentence and should now be allowed into The Hall of Fame?

Image via YouTube Screenshot

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