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Pete Rose (1877 words)

Pete Rose
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).