Pete Rose Essay, Research Paper
Bart Giamatti?s decision to ban Pete Rose from the Baseball Hall of Fame was not a fair decision at all. Pete Rose was placed on Baseball?s ineligible list in 1989 when commissioner of baseball, Bart Giamatti concluded that Rose had bet on baseball games, including games involving his own team, the Cincinnati Reds. In an agreement made with Baseball, Rose accepted his banishment from the sport. Although he never admitted to having gambled on baseball games(McCarver 44). Pete Rose was a phenomenal baseball player and manager. He was accused of gambling. His team while he was managing was supposedly involved. Bart Giamatti?s severe punishment of Pete Rose is a very controversial topic in the world of sports.
There are a few rules that must have been followed to be inducted to the Hall of Fame. The one that is keeping Rose away is rule five. Rule five states: Voting shall be based upon the player?s record, playing ability, integrity, sportsmanship, character, and contributions to the team or teams on which the player played (Hemmer 85). This rule has been tested and beaten many times.
Many players have entered the Baseball Hall of Fame such as the very unllikeable Ty Cobb, the drinking Babe Ruth, the umpire abusing John McGraw, the racist Cap Anson, Gaylord Perry a suspected cheater, and the gambling Leo Durocher. Those are just a few of the baseball players who somehow made into the Hall of Fame and got passed rule five (Will 225). Pete Rose?s problem was not even as severe as all of these other men. The argument to this is that if these men can make it into the Hall of Fame why is Pete Rose banned. It is obvious that these players made it there with just their playing abilities and not by all of the other characteristics needed to be inducted into the Hall of Fame (Will 226).
Pete Rose started playing professional baseball in 1960 in the minor leagues and by 1963 he reached the Major Leagues as a rookie second baseman with the National League?s Cincinnati Reds. Rose won the National League?s Rookie of the Year Award for 1963. He spent most of his 24 year career playing with the Reds, Rose also played with the Phillies and the Expos. In 1985 Rose broke one of the most ?unbreakable? records of all time, by passing out Ty Cobb for the most career hits ever (US fans n.p.). Rose holds many records, some of which are: most games played, most at bats, and most singles by a major league baseball player. All of these statistics are definitely Hall of Fame worthy (Cosmic baseball n.p.).
Pete Rose denies that he ever bet on Major League baseball games. The commissioner of baseball, Bart Giamatti, did not believe Rose at all. There is not any kind of proof that directly led to Rose gambling. There is evidence that does lead to Rose gambling on games, even ones involving the Cincinnati Reds (Reston 32). This evidence came from three men who are former friends of Pete Rose. Tommy Gioiosa, Paul Janszen and Ron Peters were a group of bodybuilders in a local gym in Cincinnati. All three of them used steroids to make themselves physically big (Allen 158).
Gioiosa, Janszen, and Peters each was convicted of felonies. They were all involved in illegal gambling, drug dealing (cocaine and steroids), and income tax evasion. Pete Rose knew what kind of men these three were and broke away from them. It is possible that these three men could have turned Rose in for some kind of pay back, because of the fact that Rose stopped associating with them (Allen 160). How reliable are these men and their information about Rose?
Pete Rose met Tommy Gioiosa in Florida in 1978. The two of these men became good friends. Gioiosa moved to Cincinnati and lived with Rose and his family that year. Tommy Gioiosa introduced Rose to the group of bodybuilders at the local Cincinnati gym. Among this group was the gym’s owner Mike Fry, and a bodybuilder Donald Stenger. Donald Stenger was a big supporter of steroids. Tommy Gioiosa really bulked himself up with steroids that he got from Stenger (Reston 58). When Rose was asked about gambling, the only name that was said was Tommy Gioiosa. Gioiosa would be the one to know what really happened (McCarver 42).
In February of 1990 after refusing to speak about the investigation of Pete Rose to baseball officials, and six months after Rose?s banishment, Tommy Gioiosa was on a Cincinnati talk show. On this show Gioiosa claimed that Rose did bet on baseball games. By this time the two men were no longer friends. The investigation of this is if Tommy Gioiosa is telling the truth or was he being revengeful (Scott 26). He might be paying Rose back for having taking advantage of him, because Gioiosa claims that Rose frequently borrowed money from him but never paid it back.
Paul Janszen played a major role in Major League Baseball?s investigation of Pete Rose as well. Tommy Gioiosa introduced Janszen to Pete Rose in October of 1986. A year later Janszen would replace Gioiosa as being Pete Rose?s ?number one man?. He was a shadow to Rose. Paul Janszen and his girlfriend Danita Marcum went with Rose and his family to Florida for the 1987 Spring Training season. During the 1987 baseball season, Janszen was a frequent visitor to Rose?s manager?s office at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati (Salisbury 55).
In March of 1988 Janszen was being investigated in connection with an FBI search into drug dealing and income tax evasion. Other members of the local gym were involved and Janszen began cooperating with the investigators. Janszen also needed a lawyer, and to pay for this Janszen need to get back the $40,000 he had lent Rose the past year. According to Paul Janszen Pete Rose only paid back $10,000. The rest of the money that Janszen felt Rose owed him would never be coming (Salisbury 57).
After this Paul Janszen was feeling betrayed by Pete Rose, he then began answering questions about him to the FBI investigators. Janszen plead guilty to a charge of income tax evasion and because of his cooperation he received a light sentence of six months in a halfway house. Paul Janszen had also talked to John Dowd who was leading the Pete Rose investigation. Janszen had told this man in February of 1989 that Rose had bet on baseball games. Janszen also provided documentary evidence in the form of betting sheets that were written by Pete Rose (Salisbury 60-61).
Another friend of Pete Rose had also provided information to John Dowd; Ron Peters. Ron Peters claims that in 1987 Rose would sometimes bet up to $30,000 a day on various Major League baseball games. Peters was convicted of drug dealing and tax evasion (Hemmer 128).
Paul Janszen?s and Ron Peter?s testimony was said to be accurate by John Dowd. Dowd then informed the commissioner Bart Giamatti and showed him the report. This 225 page report plus 2000 pages of interviews and documents was released to the public in June of 1989. Pete Rose was then interviewed after this release of the report and was asked what he thought of everything. Rose responded, ?I am guilty of one thing in this whole mess, and that?s I was a horse*censored* selector of friends.? He was also asked what he thought of the Dowd Report and he said it was a bunch of bull *censored* (Cosmic Baseball n.p.).
It is a fact that Pete Rose is a gambler. He admits that he gambled. On November 8, 1989, he went on the Donahue TV talk show and told the world that he was a compulsive gambler and that he was now getting professional help. Rose denied that he ever bet on baseball games. When Rose was asked by the audience, if he is a big gambler how can he not gamble on baseball games. He did not answer the question (Cook 218).
Pete Rose was associated with gamblers and drug dealers, money obsession is associated with this territory of people. It has been said if Pete Rose was a gambler, he had to have gambled on Major League baseball games. Even though he said he had never bet on baseball games many people do not believe him because he was a gambler and he is an unreliable source to this case. In the report that John Dowd wrote, most of his sources of information are from two convicted felons; Ron Peters and Paul Jenszen (Allen 195).
The biggest scare of this Pete Rose scandal is not the fact that he bet on games, it is the possibility that the games were fixed. A writer for the Los Angeles times wrote that betting on games is totally different from fixing games. This writer also points out that the 1919 Black Sox were crooks, Pete Rose is just an addict (Scott 26).
Hall of Famer, Mike Schmidt, a former teammate of Rose?s in Philadelphia thinks Rose should be in the Hall of Fame as well. At Schmidts induction ceremony in 1995 he publicly said, ?I hope some day, some day soon, Pete Rose will be standing right here, I know you all agree with me on that. Pete stood for winning (Scott 26).?
A former major league umpire Dave Pallone, on March 15, 1996 said, ?I don?t know whether he bet on baseball or not, but he certainly has paid for any mistakes he may have made. He has admitted he has a gambling problem and baseball has given numerous chances to men with alcohol and drug sickness and they should allow Pete Rose to come back.? This is ironic because, Pete Rose was suspended for thirty days in 1998 when he shoved Dave Pallone during a game between the Reds and the Mets. Pallone still believes that Rose should be in the Hall of Fame (Scott 26).
Former United States President Jimmy Carter published an article on October 30, 1995. It was about Pete Rose?s scandal and forgiving him. Carter wrote, ?I find the testimony (mostly from convicted felons) about Pete Rose?s betting on sports events to be convincing and disheartening, but evidence about betting on baseball is less than compelling.? Jimmy Carter wants the American Public to forgive Pete Rose and to give him a chance in the Hall of Fame (Scott 26).
Bart Giamatti banned Pete Rose from baseball because he believed that he had broken the cardinal rule of baseball and bet on baseball games. The day after Giamatti banned Rose from baseball, Giamatti held a press conference. He said that the matter of Pete Rose is now closed. It will be debated and discussed. Let no one think Rose has hurt the game, it will pass, and the game will go forward. Bart Giamatti made it clear that Rose was forever banished from baseball and he will never have another chance (Reston 12).
When Pete Rose was place on the ineligible list in 1989, the Hall of Fame rule number three said that any player on Baseball?s ineligible list shall not be eligible for the Hall of Fame. According to the current version of Baseball?s rules, Rose can be eligible for the Hall of Fame by getting of the banishment list. No one in the history of Major League Baseball has been able to get off the list. Pete Rose can petition Baseball?s powers to get off the list. Once he is off the list, he can be considered for the Hall of Fame (Reston 303).
No one is sure if it is Pete Rose?s goal in life to be in the Hall of Fame. It might be hard but it is possible that Rose can be taken off the ineligible list. If he really wants to be in the Hall fame, he has the chance (Reston 304).