Rob Manfred Rejects Pete Rose’s Bid For Reinstatement

According to a report from ESPN, Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred has denied Pete Rose’s attempt to be reinstated back into the game. Manfred released a letter to Rose that was then made public that kept Rose’s lifetime ban intact.

“Mr. Rose has not presented credible evidence of a reconfigured life either by an honest acceptance by him of his wrongdoing… 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. Mr. Rose’s public and private comments, including his initial admission in 2004, provide me with little confidence that he has a mature understanding of his wrongful conduct, that he has accepted full responsibility for it, or that he understands the damage he has caused.”

Pete Rose was initially barred from baseball in 1989 for gambling, steadfastly proclaiming his innocence until his autobiography was released in 2004. But even then, Rose only admitted guilt when he was the manager of the Cincinnati Reds. Rob Manfred took over for Bud Selig as MLB commissioner in January of 2015, and received Rose’s application for reinstatement the following month. The two met in September and Manfred ultimately decided that allowing Rose back into baseball would prove to be an “unacceptable risk.”

Commissioner of Baseball Rob Manfred Watches World Series [Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images]Pete Rose certainly has Hall of Fame credentials, yet remains on the outside looking in. His 4,256 hits are the most all-time. He won three batting titles, three World Series, and was named to the All-Star team 17 times. Rob Manfred did make it clear that, despite the denial of reinstatement, it should not affect his contention for the Hall.

“In my view, the considerations that should drive a decision on whether an individual should be allowed to work in Baseball are not the same as those that should drive a decision on Hall of Fame eligibility… Any debate over Mr. Rose’s eligibility for the Hall of Fame is one that must take place in a different forum.”

Both ESPN and the New York Times reported earlier that it was unlikely Rose would be reinstated, despite Rose’s lawyers claiming he had reconfigured his life.

Pete Rose in Cincinnati for Ceremony [Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images]Rob Manfred becomes the third commissioner that Rose has pleaded to for reinstatement. His first application went to the desk of Fay Vincent in 1992. But Vincent, like Selig after him in 1997, did not act on the request, leaving the ban intact both times. When Manfred took over earlier this year, he made it a priority to revisit Rose’s attempt to get back in the game of baseball. A game which bestowed nicknames like “The Hit King” and “Charlie Hustle” on the now-74-year old.

The decision comes at a time where Rose has been more visible than ever on the outskirts of the game. Alongside another controversial figure in Alex Rodriguez, Rose worked as a studio analyst for Fox Sports, the network that provided coverage of the MLB playoffs and the World Series. He’s also been allowed back inside ballparks to celebrate baseball’s all-century team and to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the day he became the all-time hits leader.

At 57-years-old, Rob Manfred is the 10th commissioner of Major League Baseball. He began working in baseball in 1987 as a lawyer during collective bargaining. Prior to succeeding Bud Selig, Manfred acted as the chief operating officer of MLB beginning at the end of the 2013 season. John Dowd, the special counsel who led the MLB investigation that got Pete Rose banned from baseball, approved of Manfred’s decision.

“My reaction is I am very proud of the commissioner. He got it exactly right. I am happy for the game.”

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