Rose voluntarily accepted a permanent place on the ineligible list from commissioner Bart Giamatti following allegations presented in a March 21, 1989 Sports Illustrated article that tied him to baseball gambling, and formally detailed in the Dowd Report. Rose accepted that there was a material reason for the ban. In return, Major League Baseball agreed to make no finding of fact with regard to the gambling allegations. On February 4, 1991 the Hall of Fame voted to exclude players banned from baseball.
In his autobiography My Prison Without Bars, officially released on January 8, 2004, Rose finally admitted publicly to betting on baseball games while managing the Reds. He repeated this admission in an interview on the ABC news program Primetime Thursday. He also said in the book that he hoped his admission would help end his ban from baseball.
Rose, born in Cincinnati, Ohio, was signed by the Cincinnati Reds as an amateur free agent on July 8, 1960. He made his major-league debut with the team April 8, 1963. He played for the Reds until 1978, helping lead the team to five division titles, four World Series appearances and two consecutive World Series titles (1975 and 1976). On a team with many great players, Rose was viewed as the club's leader, and the influence that his gung-ho attitude had on his teammates was very likely a factor in the success of what was called The Big Red Machine.
Rose then left for the Philadelphia Phillies via free agency and played there from 1979 to 1983, where he helped an already successful team earn three division titles, two World Series appearances and one World Series title (1980).
After the 1983 season, Rose was a free agent again. He was 42 years old and had amassed 3,990 hits, 199 away from Ty Cobb's all-time mark. Unable to complete a deal with Cincinnati, where he hoped to be playing when he surpassed Cobb, and unable to create much interest because of his age, he signed with the Montreal Expos. Negotiations with the Reds continued into the 1984 season, however, and on August 16 he was traded to the Reds for Tom Lawless and became their player-manager. He played for the Reds until 1986 and managed the team until 1989.
One of the low points of Rose's playing career came in the 1970 Major League Baseball All-Star game. In the twelfth inning of a tie game, Rose was coming to home plate standing and collided hard with catcher Ray Fosse. Fosse's shoulder was dislocated and his career suffered after the incident. Most observers felt that Rose had acted too aggressively for an exhibition game.
Rose was sent to jail for five months in 1990 for income tax evasion. Recently, Rose has been the talk of much discussion concerning his acceptance into the Hall of Fame. Even though he has been suspended, many fans believe he should be reinstated or at least placed in the Hall of Fame because of his tremendous achievements during his playing career. For example, before game two of the 1999 World Series, Rose received the loudest ovation during the introduction of baseball's MasterCard All-Century Team. After the ceremony on live television, NBC's Jim Gray repeatedly asked Rose if he wanted to admit betting on baseball and apologize, prompting millions to call and email NBC condemning Gray's lack of tact.
Major League Baseball Records and Accomplishments