Monday, 14 December 2015

MLB commissioner upholds Pete Rose's ban from baseball

Pete Rose's stay in baseball purgatory continues, and it appears he has himself to blame.Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred issued a statement Monday denying Rose's request for reinstatement, issuing a four-page decision that showed Rose continues to bet on baseball and failed to disclose that to the commissioner in September until pressed.The denial means the lifetime ban that began in 1989 after Rose was caught gambling while managing his hometown Cincinnati Reds stays in place. As a practical matter, the decision keeps Rose from being eligible for the Hall of Fame."I've heard from (Commissioner) Manfred directly, and he has denied our application to reinstate Pete, which is very disappointing," Rose's lawyer Raymond Genco told The Enquirer.

In a statement, Genco said that "Pete's fall from grace is without parallel. He also recognizes it was also of his own making.""While we may have failed at our task of presenting all the facts to the Commissioner demonstrating how Pete has grown and changed over the past three decades, Pete indeed has meaningfully reconfigured his life – the standard laid out by as Commissioner Giamatti," Genco said in the statement. "As such, Pete seeks to be judged not simply by the mistakes of his past but also by the the work he has done over the last three decades in taking responsibility for his actions, constantly working to remain disciplined, compassionate and grateful."The "Hit King" has now spent 26 years in baseball exile. He was banned from working in the game and attending official activities as anything but a paying customer after he was found to have bet on baseball – including on his own team – as the manager of the Reds.Manfred cited several reasons for his decision, including the original evidence from the 1989 report by John Dowd that listed proof that Rose bet on baseball as a manager, as well as new evidence that was discovered earlier this year that Rose may have bet while a player-manager.In addition, Manfred wrote that he believed Rose has not "reconfigured his life" because he still gambles occasionally, including on baseball, and that Rose took a lie detector test in August that was inconclusive due to "technical reasons" that were not Rose's fault.In short, the statement points out several inconsistencies in Rose's testimony and statements to the commissioner's office that exist even now, and not just for the nearly 20 years that Rose denied ever betting on baseball."Here, what has been presented to me for consideration falls well short of these requirements" for reinstatement, Manfred wrote. "It is not at all clear to me that Mr. Rose has a grasp of the scope of his violations of Rule 21 (the rule outlawing betting on baseball)."Even more troubling, in our (September) interview, Rose initially denied betting on baseball currently and only later in the interview did he 'clarify' his response to admit such betting," Manfred wrote in a footnote of his statement.The continued ban means Rose is ineligible for the Hall of Fame, even though he holds the game's all-time hits mark as well as several other records. Manfred wrote that Rose could still take part in on-field ceremonies with his permission on a case-by-case basis, but could not be affiliated with any specific team. The statement also left open the possibility of Rose returning to national TV work much like that he did last season for Fox Sports, but again, only with Manfred's permission.Dowd, who led baseball's investigation into Rose's gambling in the late 1980s and issued the damning report that led to the ban, said Monday that he "is very proud of the commissioner.""It's a great vindication of the integrity of the game by a very good commissioner," Dowd told The Enquirer. "I hope this is the final nail and the end of it, but I don't think it will ever end. The most important thing is that the commissioner protected the game."Reds president and chief operating officer Bob Castellini, who worked behind the scenes to try and get Rose reinstated, said in a statement that he respected the decision."We also appreciate that the Commissioner stating that Hall of Fame consideration is a separate issue and we and the fans think he deserves that opportunity," Castellini said. "We are pleased that we have had and will continue to have opportunities to commemorate Pete's remarkable on-field accomplishments."

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