Manfred: Rose's Hall eligibility a separate issue
Reinstatement denied, but Commissioner says hits leader's potential spot in Cooperstown not up to MLB
While Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred denied Pete Rose's request for reinstatement to baseball, Manfred also indicated it is not within MLB's authority to keep Rose off the National Baseball Hall of Fame ballot.
And, it would appear Rose also will still be allowed to participate in activities involving the Reds and Major League Baseball at Manfred's discretion.
Regarding the Hall of Fame, Manfred's statement read, "It is not part of [MLB's] authority or responsibility here to make any determination concerning Mr. Rose's eligibility as a candidate for election to the National Baseball Hall of Fame," and "any debate over Mr. Rose's eligibility for the Hall of Fame is one that must take place in a different forum."
That position was supported by Reds president and chief executive officer Bob Castellini, who said in a statement, "The Commissioner called me this morning prior to the announcement. We respect his decision on the matter of Pete Rose and are grateful for his diligence and the amount of time he spent on the matter. We also appreciate that the Commissioner stated that Hall of Fame consideration is a separate issue, and we and the fans think he deserves that opportunity."
That opportunity does not appear to likely, however, as the National Baseball Hall of Fame released a statement Monday reiterating its position: "Pete Rose remains ineligible for Hall of Fame consideration, based on the Hall of Fame's bylaws, which preclude any individual on baseball's ineligible list from being considered a candidate for election."
The Reds were pleased that the Commissioner left unchanged the ability for Rose to participate in baseball in unofficial capacities, as he has did at this year's All-Star Game in Cincinnati and as a FOX analyst this October.
"We are pleased that we have had and will continue to have opportunities to commemorate Pete's remarkable on-field accomplishments," Castellini said in his statement. "Any future plans to celebrate Pete's career with the Reds first will be discussed with the Commissioner and then will be communicated publicly at the appropriate time."
Manfred's decision thus will uphold Rose's ban from baseball first imposed in 1989, when it was discovered that Rose gambled on the sport. Rose applied for reinstatement in February.
Regarding the decision to uphold the ban, the Commissioner wrote, "In short, Mr. Rose has not presented credible evidence of a reconfigured life either by an honest acceptance by him of his wrongdoing, so clearly established by the Dowd Report, or by a rigorous, self-aware and sustained program of avoidance by him of all the circumstances that led to his permanent ineligibility in 1989. Absent such credible evidence, allowing him to work in the game presents an unacceptable risk of a future violation by him of Rule 21, and thus to the integrity of our sport. I, therefore, must reject Mr. Rose's application for reinstatement."