In 1989, Pete Rose agreed to a permanent ban from baseball by then MLB Commissioner Bart Giamatti, concerning allegations that he engaged in conduct, not in the best interests of baseball in violation of Major League Rule 21, including but not limited to betting on MLB games in connection with which he had a duty to perform.
A couple of years later in 1991, the National Baseball Hall of Fame voted formally to exclude individuals on the permanently ineligible list from being inducted into the Hall of Fame by way of the Baseball Writers Association of America vote. To further add insult to injury, in 2008, the Veterans Committee barred players and managers on the ineligible list from consideration.
Rose denied ever gambling on baseball until 2004 when he finally admitted to gambling during his time as a field manager for the Cincinnati Reds. He held on to the lie of just betting as a manager until earlier this year when some credible documents surfaced proving that Rose indeed gambled as both player and manager. This means that he lied to us for 26 years.
Either Rose has a bad memory or he's just a flat-out liar. Does this make him a terrible person? As a person that has made many mistakes in life, I would have to say hell no! Though I would have to agree with the continued permanent ban because as a manager his on the field decisions had the ability to affect the outcome of games.
Although there is no direct proof that Rose bet against the Reds, he showed a pattern of betting on certain games which further compromised the integrity of the game.
That doesn't mean that Rose assisted in "fixing" games, but it's very likely that bookies were using this as inside information since this allowed them the ability to gauge Rose's confidence in his team prior to scheduled games. Also, the amount of money that he placed on certain games could've very well influenced some of his decisions as a manager.
Although both Pete Rose and PED (Steroid) abusers were wrong, you must take into account that the abusers didn't have the on the field decision-making abilities like he had as a field manager.
For now, that's a mute point because the majority of baseball sports writers have made it clear that they will not admit any player who's even suspected of using performance-enhancing drugs into the hall.
That's pure hypocrisy though because I'm sure many of them have stretched the truth a time a two and have done some unethical things obtaining leads for a story. These are the same imperfect individuals that are judging Rose, Bonds, McGwire, Sosa, Piazza, Clemens and the ARod's of the world.
Although I strongly believe that the majority of the criticism towards Rose is warranted, I also believe that he deserves, at least, an opportunity to become eligible for the baseball HOF process because of his on the field successes as a player.
Even, if that never happens, he has no one to blame but himself. Maybe next Christmas, Santa will overlook the who's been naughty or nice question that MLB constantly considers for Rose and influence them to grant his reinstatement into Major League Baseball.