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NPR's Morning Edition
Broadcast 21/01/2000, Story 12

N. p. r.'s morning edition i'm bob edwards before the end of this month lawyers for major league baseball and for pete rose are expected to meet and discuss roses latest effort to be reinstated to the game rose was one of baseball's greatest players he was permanently banned in nineteen eighty nine for allegedly betting on baseball

In perot's case remains a sore point for the sport because of this suspension roses and eligible for the hall of fame many fans believe rose has been punished enough and deserves reinstatement recent public support has prompted world's to plead his case again n. p. r.'s tom goldman reports

In a baseball career that stretch from the nineteen sixties to the eighties pete rose establish himself as the kind of gritty blue collar sports hero americans love

Nicknamed charlie hustle rose was the spark plug of the big red machine the great cincinnati reds teams of the nineteen seventies he would charge a random basis and launch himself in the head first winds eyes focused and now shot so we wouldn't have the dirt and that he would crowd chanting crowd the plate and then smack in baseball anywhere he wanted always great at getting a hit peres became the best on september eleventh nineteen eighty five

They hit a milestone in any major league career but when you read past legendary

A common of september ninth week and number four thousand one ninety two in a row is a legend but certainly an adoring public had no idea that four years later he would leave as the game's biggest disgrace

In early nineteen eighty nine when rose was managing the reds baseball commissioner bart giamatti asked attorney john dowd to investigate rumors that was was betting on baseball rumors that rose has always denied a doubt who once prosecuted mafia members of his his report on the investigation contain clear evidence of guilt

In peace won't records tattoos in writing or the betting slips will his bank records his telephone records all really exposing his denial was alive

The nearly two hundred thirty page report includes corroborated testimony the risk that thousands of dollars on baseball and on the reds between nineteen eighty five and eighty seven when he was both a player and manager

There was never any evidence rose bet against cincinnati which some say was in a perverse way the ultimate sign appear as his dedication to his team the doubts and resolute action on the field his decision making as a manager still were harmful

Every day is better for the rescue was committee doesn't that luminoso or coaching the suggestion that what would you agree that the war could spread out over a wire process rose petals like a lot of money because our companies in flames

Even though the dow reports said where is that on baseball league authorities stopped short of officially making that accusation instead they worked out an agreement essentially a plea of no contest in which rose was permanently suspended that he neither admitted nor denied betting on baseball problem with that

Now safe from being punished for those mistakes however the settlements there uh especially the warning that says that they will find no sooner had no fighting in a foundational to some special commission back in february and something that produce people at four months

Rose did acknowledge the commissioner had quote a factual basis for imposing the penalty the result of quote your money breached the agreement on the commissioner publicly stated his personal opinion yes

I think we've interviewed on baseball

Roads have the right to apply for reinstatement by g. m. i. a. said it was important first peres to reconfigure a life filled with gambling and mounting debt g. money died suddenly of a heart attack just days after the settlement and roses problems continued in nineteen ninety he went to prison for not reporting hundreds of thousands of dollars in income over the next decade he didn't generate any evidence to contradict the dow reports and the suspension stayed in place

Then this past october rose got the kind of boost the been hoping for for their own and not only possible

We're going to win the world series in

And that's the threats made his first invited apparent to the major league ballparks and his penchant for this was named to baseball's all century mean hand at the pre game ceremony he got a derivation and stars like ted williams and hank aaron that he left the field there with the infamous jim gray interview in which the n. b. c. reporter grilled for hours about gambling either be created a storm of protest by viewers to fund raise questions were inappropriate with public opinion swinging his way

Received a world series news conference to state his case

I'm very optimistic person as well as a good lawyer because i i believe in things and uh i just think somewhere down the line and some would say give me a second chance i won't either

And we all know that they so hesitant to give people more than one chance

The show of public support continued after the series national polls showed nearly seventy five percent wanted rose and the hall of fame an internet site calling for roses reinstatement generated more than three hundred thousand petitions in the first few days the last twenty five years

University of nevada professor richard davies is writing a book on the history of sports gambling in this country

He says the rest is benefiting from that change in attitude clearly

American people know that the thirty seven states with lotteries are with casinos in most states now whether they're in in our state sanctioned or scandal and is no longer considered that people think it's no longer considered that

It is in baseball however and the reason resides in history as early as the eighteen seventies baseball players were linked to gamblers but the game wasn't seriously threatened until nineteen nineteen

Many members of the chicago white sox were banned for life for throwing the world series the so called black sox scandal in baseball to declare that gambling on the sport by participants in the capital crime but why the public wonders does baseball come down so hard on gambling when i regularly get second chances to drug users or wife beaters

Dave hansen was deputy commissioner at the time of roses suspension

Drug use we'll show baseball hall of spousal abuse serious is that our collection will kill any sport that is the game gets really entwined with gambling and and the fans can count on in the picture of ballplayer giving is all without being affected by a bribe

And the defendant's residence recent push for reinstatement has spurred his adversaries into action

They vincent recently read in the new york times that reinstating rose would lessen the deterrent to gambling in baseball john dowd posted his report on the internet but bentsen and downs there is this apparent lack of remorse and unwillingness to admit guilt make it that much harder for baseball officials to consider his reinstatement

Among those who rented out report baseball writer and historian bill james is one of the few who doesn't believe the evidence proves rose bet on baseball and jane says it's wrong for people to demand that rose to admit his guilt

Baseball signed an agreement with pete rose stating that there is no official finding that rose bet on baseball it is completely inappropriate for baseball to sign an agreement saying there's no finding a bet on baseball and then say that they think i'm well you can't come back because you won't admit you bet on baseball

Roseanne his attorneys who declined to comment for this story say they will present new evidence in their upcoming meeting with baseball's lawyers right now major league baseball is promising nothing more than this initial meeting it appears officials will require a lot more convincing even if more and more fans say it's time to get here as back in baseball and into the hall of fame this is tom goldman n. p. r. news washington

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