Written by LaShawn Encarnacion aka The Dark Knight of Sports
In the latest attempt to get his status with MLB reinstated so he can be eligible for Hall-of-Fame consideration, Pete Rose denied again by MLB front offices. The primary reason to this date is that Rose bet on games, which is clearly a character flaw, one of the major requirements for consideration. But if that is the case, then the Hall-of-Fame equals hypocrisy for the many others currently in who have serious character issues.
From players who used too much pine-tar like George Brett to blatant womanizing and at times beating women players like Babe Ruth, there is no question that there are current players with character issues in its hallowed halls.
Go through the entire list of current MLB players who are in the hall and you will see character issues with a good number of them.
In the world of sports, not just in baseball, it is clearly posted that there is zero-tolerance for betting on games. Posted in every locker room, front offices and in welcoming packets. So what Pete Rose did was the ultimate sin. Consider yourself committing all seven deadly sins at the same time and you have somewhat of an idea of the severity of the actions of Pete Rose.
So if character is such a big thing when selecting players to enter the Hall-of-Fame, then why is this not done for every other player? Players who continue to be involved in situations that are damaging to the “Integrity of the Game?” Players involved with domestic violence, heavy drug involvement, constant DWI/DUI charges, all of these are directly linked to ones character.
When character becomes the primary focus, it becomes a very slipper slope. In the NFL, players like Michael Irvin, Emmitt Smith, Lawrence Taylor and soon-to-be Brett Farve wouldn’t even be considered if their character was the primary thing keeping them out. In the NBA, names like Wilt Chamberlain, Michael Jordan, Isaiah Thomas and Magic Johnson would not be able to call themselves Hall-of-Famers if character issues were seriously considered as in the Pete Rose case.
YES! Pete Rose committed the cardinal sin of gambling on sports. But Rose also is arguably the greatest player to ever play the game of baseball. Number one in all time hits, played numerous positions and changed the game and how others played it. In the world of today’s baseball where players are not hustling on simple pop-outs (Bryce Harper) comes to mind, Rose would never show an ounce of letting up for any situation.
Does the All-Star Game that Rose sled into home ring a bell? Even in an exhibition game, Pete Rose gave his 100-percent every play, every game.
It is no secret that in the age of today’s sports, it has become more about the “me” than the “team.” In the NFL especially. Plays being taken off, half-speed during games, giving up on even playing competitively (Philadelphia 76ers come to mind).
There is no question that when it comes to Pete Rose and MLB, the ban should stay on forever. Rose has shown no remorse and continues the same habits that got him banned in the first place.
The Hall-of-Fame is the only thing that Rose is asking for. Since Rose is the greatest hitter of all-time and as previously stated, arguably the greatest player, Rose does deserve entrance into the hallowed halls of Cooperstown. Just as those before him who also have questionable characters.
Its time to separate the two entities and allow greatest to be where it rightfully belongs.
FYI: Be sure to follow me on Twitter: @TheDarkTruthASN
AND catch my weekly podcast “The Dark Truth” every Monday evening. 10 PM CT, 8 PM Pacific.