Pete Rose deserves to be on the Hall of Fame

Carl E. Littleberry Jr., Reporter

Over the years the baseball Hall of Fame committee has enshrined 312 people who have contributed tremendously to the history of the game. Whether it be a transcendent player like Ken Griffey Jr. this year, or former New York Yankee executive Ed Barrow who was responsible for 6 hall of famers from the 1920’s-40’s.

However, something has always bugged me as a baseball fanatic. Where on this list is baseball’s greatest switch hitter of all-time, let alone the greatest utility player in history, Mr. Pete Rose?

The Cincinnati Reds recently announced that they will induct Rose into the Reds Hall of Fame this summer. It’s time Major League Baseball did the same for its Hall of Fame.

Rose aka “Charlie Hustle” played for 24 years, having his most success as a Cincinnati Red from 1963-1978. In those 24 years, Rose didn’t just put up great numbers; he dominated the game and became the face of baseball with his timely hitting and superior base running. Never hitting for more than 16 home runs in a season, Rose was well known for accumulating multiple hit games and stealing bases. Ending his career as a 17 time all star and a three-time World Series champion, you would think that Rose would be a first-ballot hall of famer, but for some odd reason a little gambling supposedly trumps years of baseball greatness.

Yes, Rose betted on his games, and heck, the guy might have thrown a few here and there. Who are we to say? And what’s wrong with betting on yourself if you’re that good? Rose showed confidence in himself and his team to not only bet on himself but to bet hefty sums. I don’t see a problem, considering the hall of fame has a few inductees with checkered past consider Ty Cobb, he’s considered one of if not the greatest baseball players of all-time. Well Mr. Cobb was more known for being an avid racist, but no one bats an eye at him.

How can you warrant known drug addicts and literal woman beaters such as Babe Ruth, but Rose, who literally was the Uncle Tom of baseball. Why can’t he even get more than 30 percent of votes yearly? I mean it’s a travesty that someone who is considered one of the greatest players of the century can’t even beat out Mike Piazza for the hall of fame.

The Reds did Rose a solid by inducting him into the Reds Hall of Fame this year, but how can that be enough? This man held the record for most hits and games played by any other player, and you’re telling me that Mike Piazza was a better player.

I hate to be unprofessional, but that’s ridiculous. Who the hell was Mike Piazza even, an above average catcher? Name me 10 people right now who say Piazza was better, and I will point out 10 liars for you right there.

We’ve all seen how Rose jokes about his hall of fame snubs with commercials about his hallways and him going to Vegas and betting on the White Sox, but all jokes aside, this man deserves his due.

He has done so much for baseball and for the city of Cincinnati that I can’t even comprehend what the real problem is.

It’s not like he’s Barry “I’m too big for this shirt” Bonds, or Mark “Gorrilla Arms” Maguire who are known steroid users, and I’m not saying he should be looked at as a game-changer like Hank Aaron. However, Pete Rose still made his mark on baseball, and gambling had nothing to do with the hits, blood, sweat, and tears he gave to the teams he played for.

Now I never got to see Rose in action, but any real fan of any real sport knows that if you are an All-Star 17 times out of 24 years, then you must have been pretty good at your sport.

So come on committee have a heart. You already let him back into the sport, so give him that Cooperstown bust he has been having nightmares about for years.