All-Time Hits Leader Pete Rose Seeks Reinstatement

Mickey Hanley Contributor
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New Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred is willing to do something that the last two commissioners were not willing to do: listen to Pete Rose.

Manfred has received an official request from Rose to lift his lifetime ban from baseball. Rose was banned from baseball in 1989 for allegedly gambling on games while playing for and managing the Cincinnati Reds.

Manfred will be the first commissioner to give serious consideration to Rose’s reinstatement. Ex-commissioner Fay Vincent ignored Rose’s petitions, and similarly, recently retired commissioner Bud Selig acknowledged Rose’s efforts without ever intending to reinstate the all-time hits leader.

“I want to make sure I understand all of the details of the Dowd Report and Commissioner [Bart] Giamatti’s decision and the agreement that was ultimately reached. I want to hear what Pete has to say, and I’ll make a decision once I’ve done that,” said Manfred, according to ESPN.

In 1991, Rose was barred from induction into the Hall of Fame when the institution voted to ban players on the permanently ineligible list. Manfred, who currently is a member of the Hall of Fame board, says the board has not discussed how to handle the possibility of Rose’s reinstatement.

Understanding that Rose is a polarizing figure, Manfred tried his best to downplay the situation.

“Honestly, I don’t think people should read any disposition into what I’m saying about this. I see it as a really simple thing. He’s made a request. Part of my obligations under the major league constitution is to deal with those requests, and I’ll deal with it,” Manfred stated, reports ESPN.

Rose, 73, compiled 4,256 hits during his 25-year playing career. His 4,256 hits are a Major League Baseball record.