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Pete Rose Should Be in the Hall of Fame

            In Jon Saraceno's article, "Rose's Wrong Can't Be Undone (USA Today, 12.2002) he defends the1989 decision of Baseball Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti that banned Pete Rose from Major League baseball for life. The decision followed a legal review that insinuated that Rose placed bets on major league games. Because of this ban, Pete Rose is also ineligible to be inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Saraceno's article may be correct; Pete Rose may be a gambler and not an honest man. However, in my opinion, Rose is an outstanding athlete who deserves to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame.
             To support my opinion, I will begin with the writer's statement that "Gambling is baseball's ultimate sin." I agree that gambling is morally offensive. It is true that gamblers, like racists, drunks, and abusive husbands, lack integrity. Consequently, there are a number of Hall of Fame individuals who would rate low in the character and integrity areas. The very unlikable Ty Cobb, the drinking and womanizing Babe Ruth, the umpire abusing John McGraw, the racist Cap Anson, cheaters like Gaylord Perry, the gambling Leo Durocher, are just a few of the distinguished baseball players who have found their way into the Hall of Fame. Like Pete Rose, these are dishonorable men, but who is the greatest sinner? I, certainly, will not cast that stone. Pete Rose, like the ball players before him, should be considered for induction into the Hall of Fame based on his athleticism, not his morality. .
             In Saraceno's article, he further states that Rose must "prove how much he loves the game" in order to be considered for reinstatement. For twenty-four years, Pete Rose proved himself to the record books. For instance, Rose possesses the all-time Major League record for most career hits (4,256), the all-time Major League record for most singles (3,315), the all-time National League record for most career runs (2,165), and the modern National League record for longest consecutive game hitting streak (44), just to name a few of his accomplishments.

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