In recent years Pete Rose’s Hall of Fame potential has been discussed with increased fervor, especially as players who took performance-enhancing drugs become eligible for Cooperstown.
The US Mint earlier this year released a silver coin in commemoration of Pete Rose, and many collectors hinted that the Mint knew Rose would soon be made eligible for the Hall of Fame.
Still, many believe this won’t ever happen.
Pete Rose has said he believes that players like Alex Rodriguez, Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds are Hall of Fame worthy, despite the controversy over their steroid use. Many people – important people, like Commissioners of Baseball – have not viewed his case so kindly.
“The Pete Rose case represents the larger issue of gambling’s prevalence in America,” says Fay Vincent, the former baseball commissioner who, as deputy to that office, was deeply involved in Rose’s 1989 banishment from the game. “It is always out there, and it is a real threat to professional sports.”
What if Pete Rose managed his Cincinnati Reds in such a way to benefit his gambling? Some of his players say they don’t think this was true.
“The idea that Pete might have overused me or overused some other pitcher I was in the pen with, I never saw that at all,” says Murphy. “I’d just about say it is a ridiculous idea. If anything, I wanted to pitch even more times than I got in.”
As Kostya Kennedy writes of the Pete Rose predicament:
“…it comes to this: Rose has been banished for the incalculable damage he might have done to the foundation of the game. Steroid users are reviled for the damage they actually did.”
The game has warmed up to Pete Rose in recent years. On Sept. 11, 2010, the 25th anniversary of his 4,192nd hit, the Cincinnati Reds invited Pete to come commemorate the anniversary.
“Rose was driven out in a cart from the bullpen, traveling in foul territory along the rightfield line until he signaled to the driver, “Here, this is fine.” The cart stopped, and Pete lumbered out and began to walk toward first base as the crowd rustled and cheered, the hooting increasing when Pete neared the bag and, once there, raised his right leg and stomped his foot hard upon it. Home again. Cries of “Peeete! Peeete!” came out of the stands and then a spontaneous chant: “Hall of Fame! Hall of Fame! Hall of Fame!”‘
Baseball commissioner Bud Selig has been at the heart of the Pete Rose question in the twenty years since he became baseball commissioner. He has never indicated he would go back on Rose’s lifetime ban, but he does listen to Rose and his advocates, and also, in recent years, to an informal lobbying campaign from the Reds.
“There’s a hope on our part that maybe when Selig leaves office [after the 2014 season], he might pardon Rose on his way out,” one member of the team’s brass has said.
Does The US Mint Want A Say?
There has been so much chatter about Pete Rose’s possible 2015 Hall Of Fame induction, that its even crept into the silver circle. The first ever US Mint curved American coins were released in the spring of 2014.
They were issued to honor the 75th anniversary of the National baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. The ball and glove design of the coin makes it perfect for the concave shape chosen by the mint. The Silver Dollar sold out at the Mint.
One of the coins is signed by Pete Rose…
The coins sold out, according to the US Mint, as of 9:30 a.m. Eastern Time April 7. 366,340 coins were sold: 238,636 Proof coins and 127,704 Uncirculated coins. Both coins are struck at the Philadelphia Mint with the P Mint mark. 366,340 coins: 238,636 Proof coins and 127,704 Uncirculated coins. Both versions are struck at the Philadelphia Mint with the P Mint mark.
Clearly the coins have been popular. Is The US Mint hinting that Pete Rose ought to get the consideration? Who knows…some have speculated, but their interest has been in selling these silver coins. In my opinion, Pete Rose as a player should be in the Hall of Fame. With potential steroid users now entering the HoF, now is the time, which could possibly mean that these silver coins will become a cool collector’s coin.